All around the world, the covid and its restrictions are pushing already hungry communities over the edge, cutting off meager farms from markets and isolating villages from food and medical aid. Virus-linked hunger is leading to the deaths of 10,000 more children a month over the first year of the pandemic, according to an urgent call to action from the United Nations shared with The Associated Press ahead of its publication in the Lancent medical journal.
Further, more than 550,000 additional children each months are being struck by what is called wasting, according to the U.N. – malnutrition that manifests in spindly limbs and distended bellies. Over a year, that’s up 6.7 million from last year’s total of 47 million, Wasting and stunting can permanently damage children physically and mentally, transforming individual tragedies into a generational catastrophe.
“The food security effects of the Covid Crisis are going to reflect many years from now,” said Dr. Francesco Branca, the World Health Organisation head of nutrition, “There is going to be a societal effect.”
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From Latin America to South Asia to sub-Saharan Africa, more families than ever are staring down a future without enough food. The analysis published Monday found about 128,000 more young children will die over the first 12 months of the virus.