Valid International is well known for its work leading up to the international adoption of the community-based management of acute malnutrition (CMAM) – a programming approach that treats the majority of children suffering from severe acute malnutrition (SAM) at outpatient clinics and refers those suffering from moderate acute malnutrition to available support. In 2000, frustrated by the ineffectiveness of the existing model of inpatient care for SAM, VI, in collaboration with Irish NGO Concern Worldwide, developed an outpatient approach that would radically change the way that SAM is treated and greatly improve cure rates and intervention coverage. To carry out research and provide evidence on the effectiveness of the approach, VI and its implementing partners gathered data from twenty-one pilot programmes in four different countries. Ground-breaking articles, published in the Lancet and the UN’s Food and Nutrition Bulletin, along with growing support from other influential voices, led to a 2007 change in international policy for the treatment of acute malnutrition and the widespread adoption of the CMAM model. This has now achieved a significant expansion in treatment for SAM globally, and by 2012 over 2.5 million children suffering from the condition were accessing treatment annually, compared to less than 1 million in 2008 (UNICEF data).
VI continues to support the quality and scale up of CMAM programmes globally with a team of highly experienced public health, nutrition, epidemiology and anthropology technicians. We have recently supported adoption and scale up of the approach in countries ranging from Nigeria, Sudan and India and now work with Government and non-Governmental partners to provide support for programme evaluation and integration into ongoing health and nutrition systems.
[Valid’s model is] a pivotal innovation… that can achieve higher recovery rates and lower case fatality rates than conventional treatments; can be 90% cheaper than conventional treatments and can reach more people than conventional treatment.
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