- About A2Z
- Focus Areas
- Country Activities
- Child Blindness
The Philippines is currently implementing twice-yearly vitamin A supplementation and fortification of staples (wheat flour, oil, and rice) as a population-wide approach to manage micronutrient deficiencies. A2Z supports national entities such as the Food and Nutrition Research Institute and institutions associated with food fortification.
Sustainable Vitamin A Supplementation
The objective of A2Z in the Philippines is to achieve 80-90 percent coverage of vitamin A supplementation of children 6-59 months old and to improve coverage of high risk groups such as sick children and postpartum women. In USAID-supported provinces, A2Z facilitates twice-yearly vitamin A supplementation rounds directly and in collaboration with Helen Keller International (HKI). At the national level, the project is helping build the capacity to ensure the quality of supplements that are procured locally. A2Z strengthens Local Government Unit (LGU) Health Management Systems by providing technical assistance to nine provinces and one region to prepare Provincial/ Regional Investment Health Plans and to use data from the health management information system for planning and decision-making.
A2Z facilitates USAID mission support for the food fortification activities of the government and the private sector. This involves certification of the proficiency of laboratories in analyzing fortified foods, preparation of a standard for iron rice premix, and assistance to the Bureau of Food and Drugs for food inspection. The project conducted an assessment of the feasibility of rice fortification in the Philippines in 2007.
Scaling Up Maternal Anemia Reduction Packages
A2Z’s contribution to scaling up a Maternal Anemia Reduction Package involved advocacy at the provincial level, identification of implementation barriers to anemia reduction, development of strategies for large-scale implementation, and microplanning at the Local Government Unit (LGU) level. A2Z also provided technical assistance to the Food and Nutrition Research Institute for an in-depth analysis of its 2003 National Nutrition Survey.
Zinc Treatment for Children with Diarrhea
A2Z supported the National Center for Disease Prevention and Control of the Department of Health in drafting and finalizing the administrative order for zinc, in consultation with the National Nutrition Council, International Aid, and UNICEF. In December 2007 the government signed a policy on the use of zinc supplementation and reformulated oral rehydration salts in the management of childhood diarrhea. With this legal mandate now in place, A2Z has assisted the Bureau of Food and Drugs in processing applications of two pharmaceutical firms for zinc drops/syrups for diarrhea management.