Report on National Nutrition Mission: NITI Aayog
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-II – Policies and interventions; Health
- Recently, the NITI Aayog has released “Accelerating Progress On Nutrition In India: What Will It Take”.
- It is the third progress report on the National Nutrition Mission or the Poshan Abhiyaan.
- The third progress report (October 2019-April 2020) takes into account the status on the ground and implementation challenges encountered at various levels through large scale datasets.
- These datasets are the NFHS-4 and Comprehensive National Nutrition Survey (CNNS).
- According to the report, India’s targets are conservative on stunting as compared to the global target defined by the World Health Assembly (WHA). It is a prevalence rate of 5% of stunting as opposed to India’s goal of reducing stunting levels to 13.3% by 2022.
- The targets of reducing prevalence levels of anaemia among pregnant women from 50.3% (2016) to 34.4% (2022) and among adolescent girls from 52.9% (2016) to 39.66% are also considered to be conservative as compared to the WHA’s target of halving prevalence levels.
- In the wake of the pandemic, experts warn that deepening poverty and hunger may delay achieving the goals defined under the Mission.
Suggestions by the NITI Aayog:
- On Stunting: (1) To improve complementary feeding using both behaviour change interventions and complimentary food supplements in the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS); (2) To work towards investments in girls and women; (3) To improve water, sanitation, handwashing with soap and hygienic disposal of children’s stools.
- On Wasting: (1) To include interventions that go beyond the treatment of severe acute malnutrition (SAM) and also address moderate wasting; (2) To scale-up to reach facility-based treatment of SAM; (3) To urgently release a full strategy for prevention and integrated management of wasting nationally.
- On Anaemia: To scale-up scenario that focuses only on health sector interventions which will achieve modest improvements in anaemia among women of reproductive age.
Important value additions
National Nutrition Mission
- Launched in: 2018
- It is Indian Government’s flagship programme.
- Objective: To improve nutritional outcomes for children, pregnant women and lactating mothers.
- It is backed by a National Nutrition Strategy prepared by the NITI Aayog with the goal of attaining “Kuposhan Mukt Bharat” or malnutrition-free India, by 2022.
- Aims: (1) To reduce stunting, undernutrition, anemia and low birth weight by 2%, 2%, 3% and 2% per annum respectively; (2) To address the problem of malnutrition in a mission-mode.
- 50% of the total budget comes from the World Bank or other multilateral development banks and the rest of the 50% is through Centre’s budgetary support.
- The Centre’s budgetary support is further divided into 60:40 between the Centre and the States, 90:10 for the north-eastern region and the Himalayan States and 100% for the Union Territories (UTs) without legislature.