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Friday, September 2nd, 2011 - No comments

Haiti’s silent killer

Northern Haiti
August 2011

11-month old Pierre Wisny is painfully thin, with ribs showing and his skin practically hanging off him. He weighs just 11 pounds (five kilograms).

When the circumference of his arm is measured, which is an indicator of deep body fat, he’s well into the red zone. No surprise, Pierre is severely malnourished.

The same applies for three-year old Alcincord Guerviscon. It’s clear even without measurements to see that his growth has been stunted by the same condition. He weighs only 15 pounds (seven kilograms).

In most of these cases, the children got this way due to poverty and a lack of access to good food. If they’re not given emergency treatment, they could die or suffer more effects of malnutrition, including reduced brain development.

For staff at a clinic in northern Haiti, the intervention comes in bright green packets.
They contain Medika Mamba, which means “peanut butter medicine” in Creole.
It’s a ready-to-eat paste, packed with nutritious ingredients, that over a period of weeks gives a jolt to the system and puts children back on track.

Take a couple of minutes to see more about the positive efforts underway to help the smallest and most vulnerable victims of malnutrition in Haiti.
Go to :
and click on Haiti’s silent killer.

The views expressed in this blog-post are solely those of the author.

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Guest Editor

Julie Lindsay


Julie Lindsay is a senior broadcast and web journalist with over 25 years experience working for the most respected news organizations in the world including the BBC, ITN, Reuters and CNN. Julie also worked for WebMD as Senior Managing Editor for WebMD’s new website in the United Kingdom. She was a key architect of the site, managing a team of journalists and doctors, with responsibility for all its editorial content. Julie was recently appointed Programming Director at Global Health Frontline News and is the principal manager of GHFN’s strategy to build programming outreach to Internet platforms worldwide. Launched in January, GHFN assigns video newsgathering crews worldwide to cover major global health stories in partnership with selected broadcasters and Internet platforms. As a nonprofit project with a mission to produce video news stories on global health issues that are largely under-reported by mainstream media, GHFN focuses its coverage on diseases that mainly affect impoverished populations in developing nations – malaria, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and neglected tropical diseases such as river blindness and trachoma – and on maternal/child health and food security. Funded by nonpartisan donors and operating independently, GHFN follows strict journalistic standards and produces high-quality video news material for broadcast globally by television networks and wide distribution on the Internet. Please visit the GHFN site at:

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