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Link NCA Is Experimenting With Reporting Concurrent Wasting and Stunting (WaST)


© Lenka Blanarova, Action Against Hunger
The Link NCA in Liberia, conducted across five of the country’s fifteen counties from October 2019 to May 2020, was the first to investigate stunting causal pathways, based on the UNICEF Conceptual Framework for undernutrition. As wasting and stunting have common causes, concurrence of the two forms of malnutrition in the same child (WaST) was also investigated as an outcome of the study. Investigation of WaST yielded meaningful evidence regarding this form of malnutrition- especially as it relates to programmatic recommendations. The Link NCA ultimately informed a proposal for programming that would target pathways to both wasting and stunting. Future Link NCA’s in contexts with high stunting and wasting burdens should consider inclusion of WaST and consider risk factors for both in recommendations that ultimately inform programs. There is a need to incorporate longitudinal evidence in the structuring of causal pathways, especially regarding the influence of wasting on stunting and vice versa.

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