Burundi: Acute Malnutrition Situation October - December 2017 and Projection for January - May 2018
01.10.2017 > 31.05.2018



& next steps


Based on the IPC Acute Malnutrition (IPC AMN) scale, 9 of the 18 provinces in Burundi are classified as in Phase 2 while the other provinces are categorised as being in Phase 1. According to the IPC AMN scale, Phase 2 indicates ‘Alert’ situation, which requires strengthening of existing response capacity and resilience and addressing of contributing factors to malnutrition as well as monitoring of the situation.

Of the nine provinces classified as being in “Alert” situation with regards to acute malnutrition, 3 provinces (namely Karusi, Kayanza, and Kirundo) have relatively high levels of acute malnutrition which require particular attention. It's worth to recall that at least 3 cases of Noma have been registered this year in Kirundo province.

Approximately about 125,000 children are expected to suffer from acute malnutrition in 9 of the 18 provinces in the country. Available data on the coverage of acute malnutrition treatment suggests that the coverage is not optimal.

Major contributing factors to acute malnutrition identified during the analysis are:

  1. very poor quality of food intake by children
  2. relatively high prevalence of diseases (particularly malaria)
  3. poor sanitation – see annex II for details on major contributing factors to acute malnutrition by province.

It is noted that the quality of food intake by children is poor even in provinces where acute food insecurity is low. This suggests that it may be related to behaviour and/or lack of awareness of child feeding among caregivers. Poor quality of food in other provinces may likely be the result of both food insecurity as well as behaviour and lack of awareness. Several structural issues especially human, physical, and financial capital were also identified as major factors contributing to acute malnutrition in these areas. Anaemia is a major public health problem that calls for urgent attention in all provinces.

According to the IPC AMN projection analysis, the situation is likely to remain the same in all 9 provinces that are classified as Phase 2 during the upcoming rainy season (February-May 2018). However, slight deterioration in acute malnutrition levels are likely in some provinces because of seasonality and disease trends.

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