This case describes the introduction of ready-to-use therapeutic foods (RUTFs) to treatment programs for severe acute malnutrition in children six months to five years old. It describes how RUTFs transformed malnutrition treatment in emergency and non-emergency contexts and how their use has evolved since they were introduced in 1999. The case examines RUTF policy in Haiti including the results of a pivotal pilot program and the introduction of RUTFs. The case explores the decision of the chief of Haiti’s Department of Nutrition to use RUTF for the treatment of moderately acute malnutrition in Haiti and leaves readers grappling with the question of how to implement a this policy.
Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.
Model Plumpy’nut Sachet. Source: http://www.lle.rcs.k12.tn.us/Teachers/guidance_page/Images/plumpybag.jpg. Accessed June 17, 2009. (Exhibit 7 from "Treating Malnutrition in Haiti with Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Foods" case.)
Learning Objectives: To understand the global public health approaches to malnutrition and its prevention, and to examine the role of ready to use therapeutic foods in malnutrition treatment and prevention programs.
Keywords: Childhood malnutrition, health policy implementation