Advisory Committee Meeting assesses performances of NIPN-Ethiopia

Advisory Committee Meeting assesses performances of NIPN-Ethiopia


ADDIS ABABA – December 22, 2023 (NIPN/EPHI) - The Advisory Committee (AC) of the National Information Platform for Nutrition-Ethiopia (NIPN) assessed the NIPN-Ethiopia performances of the 2023 here last Thursday, the 21st of December 2023, in the presence of employees of NIPN-Ethiopia.

Before presenting the annual progress report, NIPN-Ethiopia Coordinator Aregash Samuel (Dr.) reviewed the agreed action points from the last AC meeting. Accordingly, Aregash raised points such as the AC scorecard preparation, the caution that should be taken to phrase policy questions to avoid duplication, considering the development of a roadmap for decentralization, capacity building, and defining roles during the NIPN-Cascading process.

Presenting the 2023 annual performance report of NIPN-Ethiopia, Dr. Aregash pointed out major achievements. She mentioned the fact that the filling up of the vacant positions in the human resource structure has enabled NIPN-Ethiopia to intensify its day-to-day activities in a much better way.

She has also touched on about efforts put forth to finalize reports for seven outputs that include impacts of scaling up nutrition intervention on reduction of low-birth-weight in Ethiopia, effects of school feeding on educational and nutritional outcomes in Ethiopia, formative assessment to explore oil use knowledge, attitude, and practices among urban dwellers in major cities of Ethiopia, National Food and Nutrition Strategy Baseline Survey (with the larger FSNRD team), assessment of the nutrient profile of school meals and identifying context specific least-cost foods that can meet nutrient needs for children enrolled in school feeding programs, estimating the impact of the Seqota declaration expansion phase on stunting reduction since the start of implantation and others...

Dr. Aregash has also touched on analysis works on a draft basis, like the adolescent food and nutrition situation in Ethiopia: Implications for policy and practice; including the assessment of the performance of severe acute malnutrition treatment of children aged 6-59 months in the Amhara, Oromia, and Somali regions of Ethiopia, which will be finalized after receiving feedback.

NIPN-Ethiopia Coordinator further stated in her performance report that capacity training was given on various occasions to employees drawn from NIPN-Ethiopia, the Ethiopian Public Health Institute (EPHI), local higher learning institutions, members of the monitoring committee (MER SC), and experts of ministerial offices, including regional health bureaus and public health institutions.

Updating the NIPN dashboard was also among the major activities being undertaken in close collaboration with NIPN partner, the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), according to Dr. Aregash.

Seminars that include, among others, Methods for Nutritional and Statistical Analysis of Diets” and “Southeast Asia Regional Research Capacity Building in Nutrition”, Market for Quality in Smallholder Agriculture in Low-Income Countries, Promoting Sustainable and Healthy Diets: The Role of National Public Health Institutes, and A Tale of Two Aflatoxins: How Aflatoxins B1 and M1 Regulations Affect Global Trade were conducted by NIPN-Ethiopia over the stated fiscal year.

With regards to challenges NIPN-Ethiopia has faced during the EFY, the coordinator touched on prolonged time to sign sub-grant contracts for NIPN phase 1 evaluation, delay in the Policy Question Formulation (PQF) process due to the restructuring of the government systems, delay in procurements and financial settlement...

After listening to the performance report, AC members forwarded comments, questions, and suggestions. AC members applauded the efforts being made by the NIPN team to meet its objectives and encouraged them all to intensify efforts for much better achievements.

NIPN-staff members Dr. Anbissa Muleta and Dr. Meron Girma presented NIPN-research findings on Seqota Declaration Interventions: Impact of the Expansion Phase and Potential Impact of the Scale-up Phase on Child Stunting and Mortality, and Assessment of the Performance of Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) Treatment and Quality of Routine Nutrition Information System at Selected Health Posts in Amhara, Oromia, and Somali regions. Dr. Tadesse Zerfu and Tirsit Genye of IFPRI have also presented research findings on school feeding: achievements, challenges and prospects, and investing in healthy and cost-effective school menus in Ethiopia.

The AC Meeting has welcomed the new member, Mrs. Hiwot Darsene, Lead Executive Officer, Nutrition Coordination Office of the Ministry of Health.

Fourteen participants attended the AC Meeting, which was conducted for a half day at the Dreamliner Hotel, Addis Ababa. (NIPN/EPHI).