A study on assessment of nutrition and health status of the children one year after discharge from the Nutritional Rehabilitation Centre in South India

C. Chandra Sekhar, D. Surendra Babu, C. Sravana Deepthi, Shakeer Kahn Patan, Khadervali N., Bayapa Reddy N.


Background: Nutrition rehabilitation centers (NRCs) were started to control severe malnutrition and follow-up of children with severe acute malnutrition is essential because mortality rate of 10-30% has been reported after discharge from hospital.

Methods: A community based cross sectional study with the objectives to assess the current health status of the children discharged from the NRC and to assess the healthy practices learned by mothers during their stay at NRC. We included children those discharged from May to October 2013. The children were approached house to house visit and assessed for their health status with a pretested semi structured questionnaire. Mothers of the children were also interviewed for the knowledge and practices of the dietary and child care.

Results: Among 67 children, 8 (11.9%) children could not be traced and 7 (10.4%) were reported dead, 52 were included 27 were boys and 25 were girls with a mean age of 35 months. The current nutritional status was 71.2% were not in very low weight, 17.3% were moderately underweight, and 11.5% were still severely underweight. Children who had more number of follow-ups had a better nutritional status which was significant (p<0.0001). 94% of the mothers had knowledge about correct feeding practices and food preparations; 86.5% were aware of good hygiene; 75% aware of the danger signs. Only 59.5% of the mothers could recollect the structured play therapy.

Conclusions: Community based followup of the children following discharge from NRC and appropriate feedback to the mothers is very much essential for sustained results.


Severe acute malnutrition, Nutritional rehabilitation centres, Underweight

Full Text:



Guidelines on “Operational Guidelines on Facility Based Management of Children with Severe Acute Malnutrition-2011”. Available at: in. Accessed on 3 March 2018.

United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). Tracking progress on child and maternal nutrition. A survival and development priority. New York: United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF); 2009.

Available at: NFHS/pdf/NFHS4/AP_FactSheet.pdf; Accessed on 3 March 2018.

Tickell KD, Denno DM. Inpatient management of children with severe acute malnutrition: a review of WHO guidelines. 2015. World Health Organ. 2016;94:642-51.

Bal Shakti Yojna. Government of Madhya Pradesh, Innovative Schemes and Programme Interventions under NRHM, Department of Public Health and Family Welfare, Bhopal. Available at: Accessed on 3 March 2018.

Growth monitoring manual, National Institute of Public Cooperation and Child Development, pg No. 38-39. Government of India, Ministry of Women and Child Development, Shastri Bhawan, New Delhi-110001. Available at: Accessed on 3 March 2018.

Taneja G, Dixit S, Khatri AK, Yesikar V, Raghunath D, Chourasiya S, et al. A Study to Evaluate the Effect of Nutritional Intervention Measures on Admitted Children in Selected Nutrition Rehabilitation Centers of Indore and Ujjain Divisions of the State of Madhya Pradesh (India). Indian J Community Med. 2012;37(2):107–15.

Colecraft EK, Marquis GS, Bartolucci AA, Pulley L, Owusu WB, Maetz HM. A longitudinal assessment of the diet and growth of malnourished children participating in nutrition rehabilitation centres in Accra, Ghana. Public Health Nutr. 2004;7:487–94.

Rao BR, Naidu SA, Kumar LS, Madhavi BD. Effectiveness of nutritional intervention measures on children admitted in nutritional rehabilitation center (NRC) King George Hospital-Visakhapatnam. J Evid Based Med Healthc. 2015;2(60):9009-11.

Shakti B. New York, USA: UNICEF; 2008. Guidelines for Management of severely Malnourished Children at Nutrition Rehabilitation Centers. Government of Madhya Pradesh.