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Burden of micronutrient deficiencies and cost-effectiveness of interventions with fortified foods

At a glance


Micronutrient deficiencies (MNDs) are a major public health problem in the developing world and particularly harmful during early childhood. We estimate the cost-effectiveness of interventions with fortified foods for the reduction of MNDs in children.

The study proceeds by answering the following questions:

1) Do the interventions with fortified foods aiming to reduce MNDs in children work controlled trials?

2) How big is the lifetime burden of MNDs in children in terms of life years and quality of life lost and in terms of lower productivity and healthcare costs?

3) How can we design cost-effective interventions with fortified foods aiming to reduce MNDs in children?

The project led to a number of publications:

Eichler, K; Wieser, S; Rüthemann, I; Brügger, U (2012). Effects of micronutrient fortified milk and cereal food for infants and children: a systematic review. BMC Public Health, 12, 506. 1-26.

Wieser, S; Plessow, R; Eichler, K; Malek, O; Capanzana, M; Agdeppa, I; Brügger, U (2013). Burden of micronutrient deficiencies by socio-economic strata in children aged 6 months to 5 years in the Philippines. BMC Public Health, 13

Plessow, R; Arora, N K; Brunner, B; Tzogiou, C; Eichler, K; Brügger, U; Wieser, S (2015). Social Costs of Iron Deficiency Anemia in 6–59-Month-Old Children in India. PLOS ONE, e0136581.

Plessow, R; Arora, Narendra N K Brunner, B; Wieser, S (2016). Cost-effectiveness of price subsidies on fortified packaged infant cereals in reducing iron deficiency anemia in 6-23-month-old-children in urban India. PLOS ONE, 11, 4. e0152800.

Wieser, S; Brunner, B; Tzogiou, C; Plessow, R; Zimmermann, M B; Farebrother, J; Soofi, S, Bhatti; Z, Ahmed, I; Bhutta, Z A; (2017) Societal Costs of Micronutrient Deficiencies in 6- to 59-month-old Children in Pakistan, Food and Nutrition Bulletin, Vol. 38(4) 485-500