Achieving the Zero Hunger Pact in Guatemala: Calculating the cost to provide preventive maternal and child nutrition services to reduce stunting
Methods: The activity-based costing (ABC) methodology was used to estimate the cost of scaling-up MOH nutrition services. Nutrition-specific and –sensitive interventions were costed by geographic department and service delivery type. Primary data was collected to determine staff time allocated to each nutrition intervention, required supplies and other inputs. Resulting unit costs were aggregated to estimate 2012 costs as a base year and projections were estimated assuming expanded coverage through 2021.
Results: The ABC methodology permitted the costs for needed nutrition services to be compared with estimated budgets. Results indicate that significantly more resources are required to expand nutrition services compared to current plans and 77% of total nutrition funding should be allocated to nutrition-specific services.
Conclusions: Costing nutrition services allows governments to recognize the financial commitment needed to address stunting and for human and financial resources to be invested accordingly. Results indicate that nutrition as a sector is currently underfunded relative to national objectives. Greater investment in scaling up maternal and child nutrition services is imperative to achieve national objectives.
Learning Areas:Public health or related public policy
Describe the national context and vision for reducing chronic malnutrition in Guatemala and the need for greater investment in nutrition services Describe the methodology used to arrive at costing estimates Describe the importance of this approach in strengthening health policy development and resource allocation decisions to achieve national nutrition objectives
Keyword(s): Nutrition, International MCH
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: : I am the Maternal and Child Health and Nutrition Advisor for the Food and Nutrition Technical Assistance Project III (FANTA), funded by USAID, at FHI360. I have worked internationally for 20 years in Africa, Asia, and Latin America with MCH nutrition and gender issues; I oversaw the process of the Guatemala nutrition costing study. I have no conflict interest.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.