Reducing stunting in Bhutan: an achievable national goal

Laigden Dzed and KinleyWangmo

The kingdom of Bhutan is a tiny country, landlocked between the two Asian giants of India and China, and has a population of about 762 864 (Bhutan at a glance 2014). Despite the very small size, the country has made remarkable progress towards modern development since initiating planned development in the 1960s. Bhutan has also experienced rapid progress in many of the key determinants of nutrition and health. The life expectancy of the Bhutanese has been increasing steadily over the years, currently standing at 68 years (Statistical Yearbook of Bhutan 2014). The country’s infant mortality rate has declined to 30 per 1000 live births down from 90 per 1000 in 1990 (National Health Survey (NHS) 2012). The 2010 Multiple Indicator Survey showed the prevalence of stunting in children under 5 years to be 33.5%, indicating a 24% decline from 1986 levels (Bhutan Multiple Indicator Survey). …

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