The benefit of using growth chart to evaluate the nutritional status of preschool age children

Main Article Content

Penpuck Ratanarungrong
Rattana Panpanich

Abstract

The purpose of this cross-sectional research was to study the benefits of using growth charts
for the evaluation of the nutritional status of preschool children, and to assess the role of health
personnel and caregivers in using growth charts. The subjects were children aged between birth
and five years, their caregivers, local nurses, and health officers.
The subjects were 407 children, 49.4% of whom were male. Their average age was 40.9
months. The results showed that 66.8% of the children were well-proportioned, 74.9% had proper
weight, and 74.2% had proper height. The results also revealed more malnutrition cases than are
found in official reports. Among the 407 caregivers, 88.7% were aware of the benefits of growth
charts, 87.5% were instructed by health personnel or volunteers on how to make benefit from
the growth charts, and 8.6% were instructed but did not understand. For nurses/health officers,
85.7% have high to highest levels of understanding and confidence in the use and interpretation
of growth charts, and 78.5% are were highly confident in their ability to explain the growth
charts to caregivers. For health personnel, 57.1% had attended a training program about growth
charts more than two years prior to the study, and 42.9% had never been trained. In addition
49.9% of health volunteers had attended a training program about growth charts more than two
years ago, and 42.9% had never been trained. The study found that although growth charts were
used by the majority, they were not used to their full potential as incomplete data were found
in the system. The recommendation is that knowledge management at both the policy and
public levels should be stressed so that growth charts can be used effectively and to their
full extent.

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How to Cite
1.
Ratanarungrong P, Panpanich R. The benefit of using growth chart to evaluate the nutritional status of preschool age children. J Public Hlth Dev [Internet]. 2012 Sep. 11 [cited 2024 Apr. 21];10(2):62. Available from: https://he01.tci-thaijo.org/index.php/AIHD-MU/article/view/2647
Section
General Articles
Author Biography

Penpuck Ratanarungrong, ASEAN Institute for Health Development Mahidol University, Salaya campus