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January 2023 updates on IYCF-E publications

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Laura Delfino

Emergency Nutrition Network

Normal user

17 Jan 2023, 16:11

Dear Colleagues,

Since our last update in October 2022, we have added 18 NEW publications to our scientific repository related to IYCF in emergency settings. In addition to several international reviews, this update provides emerging evidence from the United States, Turkey, Cameroon, Ethiopia, India, Lebanon, Pakistan, Nigeria, Afghanistan, Australia, and Yemen.

Click here to view the updated repository.

The largest share of new publications focused on the Eastern Mediterranean Region. Interviews with mothers of severely malnourished children in Pakistan highlighted a lack of social and institutional support for breastfeeding and the encouraged use of breastmilk substitutes - particularly in healthcare settings. Other researchers found suboptimal IYCF practices among Syrian refugees in Lebanon, exacerbated by high rates of prelacteal feeding. These findings are put into greater context by a systematic review examining trends in IYCF practices and malnutrition across 22 Eastern Mediterranean countries.

Several new publications described barriers faced by internally displaced and refugee families. Included are recommendations for US military bases housing Afghan refugees to better align their guidance with humanitarian guidelines and international breastfeeding standards. One study documented high rates of malnourishment among internally displaced children in Cameroon. Another article highlights a training package for hard-to-reach areas used for mobile maternal and child health services (e.g., nutritional screenings, vitamin-A supplementation, de-worming, IYCF education) serving 1,712 hard-to-reach and internally displaced communities in Nigeria.

Four new publications focused on the impacts of natural disasters and climate change on IYCF. Authors discussed ways to protect IYCF in the context of unprecedented flooding across Pakistan (2022), Cyclone Fani in India (2019), and tropical storms across the US Gulf Coast (2018-2019). Researchers also examined how hot weather conditions due to climate change may impact IYCF practices in low-and-middle-income countries.

Literature related to infectious diseases continues to document the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on IYCF practices. Researchers examined the impacts of mother-infant separation, disrupted breastfeeding support services, and confusion regarding the safety of breastfeeding with SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Others focused on strategies for successful relactation. A prospective study in a conflict-affected part of Yemen examined the effectiveness of a supplementary suckling technique among infants with severe acute malnutrition. While a systematic review found promising evidence for relactation support services, the authors noted a lack of research examining their effectiveness in humanitarian contexts.

If you know anyone who would benefit from these updates, please direct them to this link to sign up for our email listserv. We aim to publish updates every 3 months – look out for out next update in April 2023.

Happy reading!

The IYCF-E Repository Team

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