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‘Reset’ of wasting prevention and treatment to catalyse action and accountability

Tackling Undernutrition Through Action and Accountability. Parallel Session – Pre-Summit of the UN FSS. Listen to the recording here.

Emergency Nutrition Network (ENN) has submitted a game-changer on a ‘wasting reset’ that has been included as part of the game-changers of Action Track 1 for the UN FSS.  

Wasting is associated with a significantly elevated risk of mortality yet is one of the most ignored nutrition problems globally. With 45.4 million children under five years of age currently suffering from wasting (WBG 2021), progress is unacceptably slow. High levels of wasting are seen in both fragile and stable contexts, with the burden most keenly felt in African and South Asian countries.  

The need for radically improved prevention and treatment efforts at scale is critical, as emphasised by the UN Global Action Plan (GAP) on Child Wasting (UNICEF et al, 2020) and the Lancet 2021 Series on Maternal and Child Undernutrition. The bedrock for effective nutrition programming is a conducive financial and policy environment, driven by strong political will and established within food, health and social protection systems that operate to prevent undernutrition. When prevention fails, access to treatment is a must.

For both the COVID-19 pandemic response and the rapidly approaching global target deadlines, nutrition actors at global and national levels must respond to the Lancet 2021 call for collective, coordinated action to address the large remaining burden of undernutrition worldwide. There is no time to lose or waste; the time has come for a wasting ‘reset’. The UN Food Systems Summit (UN FSS) and the Nutrition for Growth (N4G) Summit offer a unique opportunity to make this happen. Discussions that we can initiate at the UN FSS will lead to the announcement of a ‘reset’ of childhood wasting prevention, early detection and treatment at the N4G in December, to catalyse global action and accountability in the 2022-2030 period.

The objective of this wasting reset is “To coalesce and clearly communicate the dialogue around what is required to reduce global wasting incidence and prevalence.” To achieve this, we must join forces to speak with one collective voice; we must embrace our diversity and downplay our differences.

In concert with the UN agencies responsible for implementing the UN GAP on Child Wasting, in collaboration with the AT1 leadership team and informed by diverse stakeholder consultations, ENN will facilitate this process of identifying the steps that all stakeholders needed to implement to achieve the required reductions in wasting and reach the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) targets by 2030.

Resources

Solution 13: ‘Reset’ of wasting prevention and treatment to catalyse action and accountability.

Frequently asked questions: ‘Reset’ of wasting prevention and treatment to catalyse action and accountability.

Stakeholder Consultation on Wasting 'Reset' – Webinar recording.

Food Systems Scoping Brief.

Tackling undernutrition through action and accountability. Webinar recording.

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