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Advantages of Simplified Approach over OTP/TSFP

This question was posted the Simplified Approaches for the Management of Acute Malnutrition forum area and has 6 replies.

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Anonymous 739

Project Director

Normal user

4 May 2023, 06:37

What advantages can be gained by adopting a simplified approach over using the already well-established network of over 1,000 OTP/STFP sites that are integrated into primary healthcare facilities, for the purpose of improving health outcomes?

In the given scenario, is it worth transitioning to a simplified approach or do OTP/STFP sites offer greater advantages?

Primary Health Care is with the attendance of more than 25 Million and GAM rate is around 19% with no or poor outreach support.

Mark Manary

Washington University School of Medicine

Technical expert

4 May 2023, 13:28

In Africa at least, the major problem with OTP work is that foods are out of stock.  Simplified protocols use less food per patient, and therefore decrease the out of stock time.  So using a simplified protocol can simply mean using a streamlined, less cionsumptive treatment protocol.

Grace Funnell

Nutrition Specialist, UNICEF

Technical expert

4 May 2023, 13:48

The term “simplified approaches” refers to a number of adaptations to the existing national and global protocols for the management of child wasting and are designed to improve effectiveness, quality, coverage and reduce the costs of caring for children with uncomplicated wasting. The objective of “simplified approaches” is to improve the provision of care for wasted children so that barriers to access and uptake of quality services can be effectively and sustainably addressed by health systems around the world.

Certain modifications under the simplified approaches 'umbrella' that are often used together in what is commonly known as a Simplified or Combined Nutritional Protocol, include: use of a single product for both MAM and SAM in one program, expanded admissions criteria, MUAC only programming, and a modified dose. For additional information on these modifications, including evidence and resources please visit

Anonymous 3342

Project Director

Normal user

15 May 2023, 10:39

Replies given by my respectable colleagues are not inline of the query asked.

Can any one reply in the context of question is asked.


Nutritionniste, ANS

Normal user

15 May 2023, 11:44


- reduction of the reference level. Malnourished people can be screened and sent directly to the CREN (upper level): this saves time, and optimizes the admission rate in relation to the number of malnourished statistically expected.

- simplification of care management: use of RUTF (therapeutic food ready to use) for both MAM and SAM but in a regulated manner. For SAM with complications, the protocol remains the same.

For more info contact:


Action Against Hunger UK

Frequent user

15 May 2023, 13:24

Dear Anonymous. 

Given the generic question the advice of the colleagues that have responded is a good starting point. Simplified approaches can be applied singularly or in combination to ehnace the coverage of your CMAM programme. You note however that there is little or no outreach in the existing programme. Given that information there is no definitive answer to your question. 

To answer your question more specifically you will need to do an evaluation of your programme to see which simplified approaches would be suitable. You might also find further useful information by consulting the national government coordinating body or nutrition cluster (if present) to learn from other experiences in implementing various simplified approaches.

Lani Trenouth

Normal user

16 May 2023, 00:33

Based on your original question, I wonder if there is a misunderstanding here. Simplified approaches, in whatever form they are simplified (see the examples Grace mentioned) are implemented through existing health care facilities and not through a new, parallel system. 

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