One in four Indigenous children stunted – study

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A study has found that one in four Indigenous children are stunted due to poor nutrition, creating serious risks to their cognitive and physical development.

“The nutritional status of indigenous boys and girls in Guyana is worrisome,” the study, prepared by the Ministry of Indigenous People’s Affairs, and launched Wednesday, stated.

While the study found that health services are offered in most of the villages and persons are aware of where to go, there is a lack of health professionals in hinterland health facilities.

It quotes one health professional as saying: “People from here do not really apply to work in these fields (health-related work).

“Some who are brought in do not stay that long.”

It added: “We are not on par with the rest of the country because we don’t have a functioning lab and x-ray department.”

Regarding maternal mortality, the study found that while statistics are not available, anecdotal information points to the fact that women living in the hinterland are at a greater risk of dying due to birth complications that those on the coast. The study noted that cases if maternal mortality were reported in three of 12 villages surveyed.

The 2014 date on child mortality, the study noted, found that while indigenous boys and girls in Guyana are surviving birth, 12 in every 1, 000 die before they reach the age of five, compared to eight in every 1, 000 on the coast.

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