Jakarta (ANTARA) – The government will carry out two types of interventions to reduce stunting in children that will target mothers and toddlers, Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin has said.
“President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) had asked us to immediately implement the models in 12 priority provinces to achieve our goal of reducing the stunting rate to 14%,” Sadikin informed after attending a working meeting. on accelerating efforts to reduce stunting in 12 provinces. priority provinces at the Vice President’s Palace in Jakarta on Thursday.
The government has identified specific intervention programs, with five programs targeting mothers and another five programs targeting children, he said.
On August 5, 2021, President Widodo issued Presidential Regulation Number 72 of 2021 on Accelerating Stunting Reduction, which set out a national strategy for accelerating stunting reduction.
“For a specific intervention, the most sensitive case of growth retardation is before birth. Babies receiving growth retardation treatment before birth might have a low possibility of growth retardation,” Sadikin said.
He then cited examples of specific interventions that would be provided to young and pregnant women to prevent iron deficiency.
“Don’t be malnourished, and later we will measure the iron levels of young women, pregnant women and the nutrition of pregnant women. Only then will we intervene at the level of toddlers and babies,” the minister said. .
After birth, the government will intervene to alleviate stunting by providing supplementary food and providing infant formula to underweight babies at community health centers.
“If, after examination, the babies are stunted, we will refer them to a regional hospital to receive a highly nutritious diet. These efforts are included in our program of specific interventions for these 12 provinces,” Sadikin informed.
Meanwhile, the head of the National Population and Family Planning Agency (BKKBN), Hasto Wardoyo, who also attended the meeting, said the 12 priority provinces cover 68 percent of the national population suffering from retarded growth.
“There are 3.6 million stunted children in these provinces out of the 5.2 million stunted toddlers in Indonesia,” he pointed out. .
He said his agency has formulated a stunting reduction program that has been tailored to the conditions of each province.
“For example, NTB stunting is 37%, in 2024 we hope this number could be reduced to 20%. This will help to reach the 14% figure nationally. today is to encourage regional leaders from 12 provinces to achieve the target,” he added.
Stunting is a chronic nutritional problem caused by insufficient nutritional intake over a long period of time, usually due to eating foods that do not meet nutritional needs.
The results of the 2021 Indonesian Nutritional Status Survey (SSGI) conducted by the Ministry of Health puts the prevalence of stunting among children in Indonesia at 24.4% in 2021. The government aims to reduce the stunting rate to 14% by 2024.
The SSGI identified 7 provinces with the highest stunting prevalence: East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) 37.8%, West Sulawesi 33.8%, Aceh 33.2%, West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) 31.4 %, Southeast Sulawesi 30.2%, South Kalimantan 30.0% and West Kalimantan 29.8%.
Meanwhile, there were five provinces with the highest number of stunted children, namely West Java (971,792), Central Java (651,708), East Java (508,618), North Sumatra (347 437) and Banten (268,158).
Thursday’s working meeting also took place in the presence of the coordinating minister of human development and culture, Muhadjir Effendy; Governor of Aceh Achmad Marzuki; the Governor of North Sumatra, Edy Rahmayadi; acting governor of Banten, Al Muktabar; and representatives of regional chiefs from priority provinces.
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