Develop the framework for the design and dissemination of a booklet on frequently asked questions on infant and young child feeding, Kenya

March 8, 2019

The appropriate knowledge and practice of infant and young child feeding are critical because of their impact on child survival. The overall goal of the infant and young child feeding guidance is to mitigate the effects of common child mortality causes such as diarrheal disease, pneumonia and under nutrition that continue to be the largest contributors to infant mortality in the country. In Kenya, the 2018 infant feeding guidelines recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life and continued breastfeeding for at least two years and beyond if possible with the introduction of appropriate, adequate and safe complementary foods. These recommnedations apply regardless of the mother’s HIV status.  It is also recommended that pregnant and breastfeeding women who test positive for HIV begin ART immediately following the diagnosis and continue to take the medication for the remainder of their lives. The HIV test and treat strategy significantly reduces the risk of mother to child transmission of HIV.

The 2018 guidance on infant feeding is the latest in a series of rapidly evolving directives on the topic in Kenya. As guidelines change, there is often miscommunication and misunderstanding among health care providers and the community, reducing the uptake of optimum infant feeding practices. Additionally, other health and social circumstances such as poverty, low maternal literacy levels, teenage and adolescent pregnancies and TB/HIV co-infection pose operational uncertainty in implementation.  As a result, infant feeding practices are often inappropriate, and infants are put at high risk of mortality and HIV transmission.

In response to the uncertainty brought on by the new guidance and in an attempt to help clarify, the National AIDS and STI Control Programme (NASCOP) together with the Nutrition and Dietetics Unit (NDU) of the Ministry of Health (MoH) and with support from UNICEF would like to develop appropriate evidence-based communication messages on frequently asked operational questions regarding infant and young child nutrition, especially at the community level.

Goal and Objective:

Under the supervision of the UNICEF Chief HIV section and Chief Nutrition Section the consultant will develop a framework for the design and dissemination of a booklet on frequently asked questions on infant and young child feeding, inclusive of the context of HIV and other related circumstances. The report should contain 1) A compendium of the frequently asked questions on infant and young child feeding and 2) a conceptual plan for the development of the booklet and its dissemination plan

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