India moves to develop its own growth standards for kids -Sumi Sukanya Dutta

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published Published on Dec 6, 2022   modified Modified on Dec 7, 2022

The development comes amid growing evidence that Indian kids, even those from affluent backgrounds, have much lower values for height and weight against WHO standards. One expert warned that nearly 30% of Indian children under 5 are malnourished and by using the new standards, the government may show that to be just 15-20%

The Indian government, for the first time, has initiated moves to develop country-specific growth standards for children amid concerns that the weight and height references recommended by the World Health Organization may not be suitable in the Indian context.

Paediatricians chart the weight and height of kids from birth, which is then expressed in percentiles to assess whether a child is growing well and how she fares vis a vis other kids her age.

These measurements, which include weight, height, weight for height and body mass index, are also taken into account in several surveys and studies, including the ones carried out by governments, to gauge the parameters associated with malnutrition among kids.

The health ministry has directed the Indian Council of Medical Research to develop standards for kids aged 0-18. The ICMR has constituted a 14-member committee under senior paediatrician and researcher Dr HPS Sachdev.

Please click here to read more., 6 December, 2022,

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