The Government of Zambia is committed to integrating nutrition into health care services to prevent malnutrition and improve the nutritional status of children, pregnant and lactating women, and people with infectious diseases such as HIV and tuberculosis. In 2013, USAID/Zambia developed a strategic plan to support district-led integration of nutrition assessment, counseling, and support (NACS) into health care services in Kitwe District. Partners in this initiative include FANTA, the Thrive Project, PCI, LIFT, and ASSIST. Lessons learned from the Kitwe NACS Acceleration will inform scale-up of NACS to other districts in Zambia.
FANTA’s additional activities in Zambia include:
- Training and supporting community NACS volunteers in Kitwe District to deliver improved counseling on nutrition and adherence to antiretrovial therapy (ART) with a focus on client self-management, and evaluating how NACS contributes to improved ART adherence and retention
- Supporting the integration of NACS into service delivery in 27 health care facilities in Kitwe District by training facility-based health care providers and community volunteers in NACS, working with district health officials to establish a system for supportive supervision of trained health care providers, supplying needed anthropometric equipment, and working with partners to strengthen NACS monitoring and reporting
- Supporting updates of the national Guidelines for Nutrition Care and Support of People Living with HIV and NACS training materials and job aids for facility-based health care providers and community volunteers
- Working with the ASSIST Project to implement a NACS quality improvement process
- Working with the LIFT Project to map community support services in health facility catchment areas and strengthen referral links between facility-based NACS and community services