Integrating poverty and gender into health programmes: A sourcebook for health professionals (Module on nutrition)


WHO Regional Office for the Western Pacific

Publication details

Publication date: 2010
Price: US $ 12.00
ISBN: 9789290614890
Number of pages: 76



Although poverty and gender significantly influence health and socioeconomic development, health professionals are not always adequately prepared to address such issues in their work. This publication aims to improve the awareness, knowledge and skills of health professionals in the region on poverty and gender concerns.

The modules that comprise this sourcebook are intended for use in pre-service and in-service training of health professionals. This publication is also expected to be of use to policy-makers and programme managers as a reference document, or in conjunction with in-service training.

All modules in the series are linked, though each one can be used on a stand-alone basis if required. Two foundational modules establish the conceptual framework for the analysis of poverty and gender issues in health. Each of the other modules is intended for use in conjunction with these two foundational modules. The sourcebook also contains a module on curricular integration to support health professional educational institutions integrate poverty and gender concerns into existing curricula.

About this module

This module is designed to improve the awareness, knowledge and skills of health professionals regarding poverty and gender concerns in nutrition. Good nutrition is widely recognized as a key component of a healthy and active life for men and women, boys and girls. The Western Pacific Region has made great strides in reducing the prevalence of undernutrition among children, adolescents and adults and is making significant progress overall towards the Millennium Development Goal for hunger. However, data that measure the progress in reducing undernutrition at national level tend to mask striking inequalities among populations in the Region. At the same time, the risk factors for overweight and obesity are rising in the Region, resulting in a growing burden of overweight in some countries. Further, a growing body of evidence shows that poor men and women, boys and girls suffer disproportionately from malnutrition. Although data on nutritional outcomes among men and women in the Region are limited, evidence also suggests that the nutrition of men differs from that of women. The knowledge and tools to address malnutrition in the Region largely exist. Mobilizing support for these interventions in developing countries will improve the health of millions, thereby contributing to poverty reduction and gender equality.