Food security and nutrition surveillance systems (FNSS) are critical to public health as they provide information for immediate and medium to long term decision-making relating to the nutritional risk factors, nutritional status and nutrition-related diseases and disorders in a country’s population.
The Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) has reaffirmed its commitment to support its Member States in developing and strengthening existing food security and nutrition surveillance systems, by launching a self-paced, asynchronous online Regional Food Security and Nutrition Surveillance Course.
“The course can help develop and strengthen FNSS.CARPHA wants our MS to have a strong evidence base and capacity for the measurement of outcomes of national programs towards the achievement of regional and global targets,” stated Dr. Joy St. John, Executive Director of CARPHA.
Some of the targets include: 2007 Declaration of Port of Spain; 2007 Declaration of St. Ann; Sustainable Development Goals # 2.2 and # 3.41; World Health Assembly Targets for Improving Maternal, Infant and Young Child Nutrition by 2025; and Global Diet-Related Non-Communicable Diseases Targets 2025-2030;
The course is expected to equip participants with appropriate skills to address food and nutrition- related challenges; and provide guidelines for embarking on developing and/or strengthening food security and nutrition surveillance systems in CARPHA Member States. Four modules to be completed in the course are:
- Understanding surveillance systems;
- Developing the food and nutrition surveillance system;
- Surveillance information for public policy; and
- Sustainability of surveillance systems.
The launch of the Regional Food Security and Nutrition Surveillance Course took place on February 6th, 2023 and was attended by 25 CARPHA staff, and representatives of 15 CARPHA Member States.
The course is currently being piloted on the CARPHA Moodle platform from February 6th 2023, to May 31st , 2023, with 37 Technical Officers from Ministries of Health in 20 CARPHA Member States namely:
1SDG target 2.2: By 2030 end all forms of malnutrition, including achieving by 2025 the internationally agreed targets on stunting and wasting in children under five years of age, and address the nutritional needs of adolescent girls, pregnant and lactating women, and older persons. SDG target 3.4: By 2030, reduce by one-third pre-mature mortality from non-communicable diseases (NCDs) through prevention and treatment, and promote mental health and wellbeing.
Anguilla; Antigua and Barbuda; Aruba; Bahamas; Barbados; Cayman Islands; Curacao; Belize; British Virgin Islands; Dominica; Grenada; Guyana; Jamaica; Sint Maarten; St. Kitts and Nevis; St. Lucia; St. Vincent and the Grenadines; Suriname; Turks and Caicos; and Trinidad and Tobago.
The development of the course was funded under a Subsidiary Agreement between CARPHA and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) for Strengthening Public Health Capacities in the Caribbean Subregion.