Increasing the Enrollment of Malnourished Clients on Ready-to-use Therapeutic Foods at Kitgum General Hospital, Northern Uganda
Hospitals throughout Uganda treat severely malnourished children without medical complications through outpatient therapeutic care programs using ready-to-use therapeutic food (RUTF). During a baseline assessment at Kitgum Hospital in Northern Uganda, facility staff realized that only 60% of its identified malnourished clients at different service points were being appropriately treated for malnutrition using RUTF. A quality improvement team in the hospital identified gaps and tested several interventions to improve the enrollment and treatment of eligible clients with RUTF. They gradually improved enrollment from 30% in June 2015 to maintaining 100% enrollment through April 2016. Enrollment increased due to: 1) use of non-clinical staff to dispense RUTF at different points, and 2) physically escorting identified malnourished clients to reduce the number of malnourished clients getting lost within the health facility when referred to the RUTF dispensing points.