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Over 50 Guatemalan children die from acute malnutrition by 2023

Guatemala City, Dec 7 (Prensa Latina) Fighting malnutrition continues to be a pending issue in Guatemala as 51 children died from it, and 23,000 kids from zero to five years old are suffering it.

The aforesaid data indicate an upturn of 29% of those affected compared to the same period in 2021 and 2022, according to a report by the Epidemiology Department of the Ministry of Health and Social Assistance (MSPAS).

The country’s 22 departments have recorded an increase, with Escuintla, Sacatepequez and Izabal leading the way, but there are also signs of alarm in Zacapa, Retalhuleu and the Guatemala Sur division.

International organizations report that the high levels of malnutrition in the country are associated with food insecurity.

Such phenomenon affected this year about 4.2 million people across the country, 24 % of the total population, including 1.6 million children, the group of 19 non-governmental organizations gathered in Oxfam stated.

Oxfam added that food prices, which continue to rise, and climatic phenomena such as El Niño, with its impact on basic grain harvests, indispensable for the subsistence of families, have an influence.

Chronic malnutrition influences 46.5 % of children under five years old in Guatemala, the highest figure in Latin America and the sixth highest in the world, according to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

mh/omr/jha/znc

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