Date of Award

Fall 12-21-2018

Degree Type

Capstone Project

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


Public Health

First Advisor

Dr. Ike Okosun

Second Advisor

Dr. Barbara Yankey


Wasting or acute malnutrition can be defined as low weight for height; it is used as an indicator of malnutrition. Wasting is a significant public health problem affecting children aged 5 and below in developing countries around the world. Nigeria, a developing country is severely affected by wasting and it is one of the countries that accounted for the high burden of wasting in the World. Over the last decade, the global prevalence of wasting has decreased. Despite this, the prevalence of wasting in Nigeria has drastically increased at a percentage of 18%. Evidence has shown that wasting leads to high mortality in children. Intervention programs are proving to be ineffective in curtailing wasting because they aren’t addressing the root cause of the issue. This capstone explores the complex nature of the determinants and prevalence of wasting in children under age five via a review of previous literature done in this area. Given its public health importance, the world health assembly in 2012 set a target to reduce wasting in children to less than 5 percent by 2025. Recommendations will also be discussed on the role public health professionals and the government can play in combating the high prevalence of wasting in Nigeria.