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close this bookScurvy and its Prevention and Control in Major Emergencies (WHO; 1999; 70 pages)
View the documentAcknowledgements
View the documentScurvy: definition
close this folderIntroduction
View the documentScope
View the documentBackground
View the documentRecent outbreaks of scurvy
View the documentRisk factors
open this folder and view contentsScurvy
open this folder and view contentsVitamin C
open this folder and view contentsRecommended Daily Allowance (RDA)
open this folder and view contentsSources of vitamin C
open this folder and view contentsStrategies to prevent scurvy in large refugee populations
View the documentCosts
open this folder and view contentsConclusions and recommendations
View the documentReferences
View the documentAnnex 1
View the documentAnnex 2
View the documentAnnex 3
View the documentBack Cover
 

Background

Outbreaks of scurvy, hitherto a relatively rare micronutrient deficiency disease, have increased in frequency during the last decade among refugees dependent on food aid. In 1982, an outbreak of scurvy was reported among Ethiopian refugees in Somalia (Magan et al., 1983). Outbreaks of scurvy have also occurred in Sudan (1984, 1991), Somalia (1985), Ethiopia (1989), Nepal (1992) and Kenya (1994). During a workshop on improving the nutrition of refugees and displaced people in Africa held in Machakos, Kenya in December 1994, a number of recommendations were made for the prevention and control of micronutrient deficiencies during both the emergency and protracted phases of refugee operations. Blended foods (cereal-pulse blends) have been given in recent refugee emergencies, although little is known about their actual use. Nevertheless, the inclusion of fortified blended foods in the general food ration was recommended as the most feasible approach during the emergency phase (the first 6-12 months). For the protracted phase of an operation, local availability of fresh foods, ration exchange, employment opportunities, and food production possibilities were recommended. Research into the possibility of providing vitamin C by distributing dried chili peppers, sweets, reconstituted drinks, and seeds was also recommended.

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