Nutritional Status of School Age Children Attending OPD of Selected Hospitals


Anwar KS1 , Elham N2 , Karmakar P3 , Hague SA4


School-age is the vital growing phase of a child. Primary school age is a progressive period of physical growth and mental development of the child. Health issues because of poor nutrition in elementary schoolage children are among the foremost common causes of a low level of school enrolment, high absenteeism, early dropout and unsatisfactory classroom performance. Growth monitoring is a global tool to evaluate nutritional status, health and development of individual children, and the overall nutritional status and health ofpopulations. To find out the nutritional status of schoolage children and to signify nutritional deficiencies, a cross-sectional study was undertaken among the 222 registered school age childrenat the OPD of two selected urban and rural hospitalof Bangladesh — Holy Family Red Crescent Medical College Hospital, Dhaka and Dhamrai Upaxilla Health Complex, Savar, Dhaka. The data was collected from the parents or attendant accompanying them by non-probability purposive sampling method through semi-structured questionnaire by face to face interview. The children between 5 to 15 years were recruitedaccording to inclusion and exclusion criteria. The age group of 8-10 years constituted the highest portion (31.5%) of the respondents. The mean ± SD age of the childrenwas 9.8 ± 7.27 years. Most of the childrenwere Muslims (94.6%). About 62% of them were boys and 38% were girls. Most of the children's mothers completed theirprimary education (37.4%). The percentage of the illiterate father was 17.12% Majority of the mothers were labourers (41.32%) and most of the fathers were farmers (31.08%). Most of the respondents had monthly family income Tk 10000-30000 (43%).44% had low birth weight and about 89% of them were vaccinated following a regular schedule The mean weight of childrenwas 22.63 ±4.65 kg and height were 120.92 ± 6.54cm. According to BM1 classification, there were 58% normal, 35% undernourished and 7 % obese/overweight. The health and nutrition status of children is one of the crucial elements in the assessment of the quality of life of the people To prevent nutritional problems and their consequences early diagnosis is necessary. So, it is important to raise awareness regarding the special nutritional needs of the school-age children and regularly monitor and assess the nutritional status of them.

  1. Professor (cc) of Community Medicine

    Holy Family Red Crescent Medical College, Dhaka

  2. Assistant Professor of Community Medicine

    Holy Family Red Crescent Medical College, Dhaka

  3. Assistant Professor of Biochemistry

    Eastern Medical College, Cumilla

  4. Assistant Professor of Thorasic Surgery

    Chittagong Medical College, Chittagong

Volume 31, Number 2 July 2019
Page: 11-16