Experiences of community care givers on nutritional assessment of children under 5 years in eThekwini District
Ndlovu, Pretty Gabisile
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Introduction Malnutrition continues to be a major public health problem, especially in children under 5 years of age. Nutritional status is one of the indicators of overall well-being and human resources development of a nation. Aim of the study The aim of the study was to explore and describe experiences of Community Care Givers regarding the assessment of malnutrition in children under 5 years of age in eThekwini District Health Sub-district North area six. Methodology A qualitative, exploratory, descriptive study was used to conduct the study. Semi-structured individual face to face interviews were conducted with 13 participants. The study was guided by Pender’s Model of Health Promotion. Results The findings of the study revealed that participants were dissatisfied with mid upper arm circumference training. They reported lack of support and supervision in their performance such that mid upper arm circumference was non-prioritized. They were dissatisfied with remuneration and they worked under unsafe conditions. Conclusion In order to combat malnutrition in children under 5 years in the community, Community Care Givers need to be vigorously educated on the rationale of malnutrition assessment of children under 5 years in the communities so that they can have insight into what they are doing. Community Care Givers have multiple roles and may need to prioritize their work; this is not easy and requires specific guidance and training from skilled health professionals.