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What have we learned from the Global Nutrition Report 2018?

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The new report includes contributions from OPM nutrition consultants

mehroosh tak

The 2018 Global Nutrition Report (GNR) was recently published, with contributions from OPM consultants. It brings together new data on malnutrition, dietary intake, and global nutrition financing to suggest critical steps for global collaboration to address malnutrition.

Key highlights of the report include:

  • Stunting in children under five years of age is declining at a global level, but numbers in Africa are increasing, and there are significant disparities in progress at the subnational level.
  • At the global level, progress in addressing underweight and anaemia among women has been extremely slow while the number of overweight and obese adults is increasing, with higher rates of obesity among women than men.
  • There has been an increase in the number and breadth of national nutrition policies and nutrition targets, with the outstanding challenge being the financing and action to deliver them.
  • Donors have met the funding commitment made at the Nutrition for Growth (N4G) Summit in 2013, but globally there is still a significant financing gap; specifically, little has been done to tackle non-communicable diseases (NCDs).
  • Early indications suggest that governments in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) are committing more domestic expenditure to nutrition.

OPM’s contribution to the GNR

Consultants have contributed to the report, providing evidence of nutrition financing in LMICs. Based on our experience with UNICEF in Bangladesh and Tanzania, we were able to provide a review of government commitments regarding nutrition – and the analysis from our projects reveals that nutrition–specific spending commitment is low.

The scale of nutrition financing in these subnational governments is not the only important finding; equally significant are the degrees of efficiency and effectiveness of this spending in relation to stated plans, and the level of coordination with the national governments. Our work highlights the need to better understand where and how government budgets and donor money are being spent to tackle the burden of malnutrition and unhealthy diets.