A new micronutrient survey manual (2020) and toolkit, developed in collaboration by the World Health Organisation (WHO), Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and Nutrition International were published recently to meet the demand of countries interested in assessing the micronutrient status of their populations.
Addressing micronutrient malnutrition is one of the greatest global health challenges. Surveys assessing micronutrient status provide a basis for policy makers and programme implementers to understand the magnitude of micronutrient deficiencies and to gather the evidence needed to improve programming.
This user-friendly resource enables programme managers, government officials and researchers alike to access the entire knowledge library of best practices and resources for conducting micronutrient surveys through an interactive website.
Certain population groups, especially women and children, are at greater risk of micronutrient deficiencies. Micronutrients are critical for a well-functioning immune system, which is of utmost importance during the COVID-19 pandemic. If a population has a poor status for key micronutrients, such as vitamin A, zinc or vitamin D, then they may be less well equipped to mount a proper immune response when exposed to viral or bacterial infections than if they had adequate micronutrient status.