Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Ministry of Health is aiming to ensure all integrated health post (posyandu) cadres possess the standardized skills to accurately measure and weigh under-five children.

Maria Endang Sumiwi, the ministry's Director General of Public Health, stated on Friday that the number of posyandu cadres in villages reached 1.5 million, with data submitted for 1.1 million.

"However, only about 257,000 cadres currently possess the standard skills," she said after attending a coordination meeting on stunting reduction acceleration in Jakarta.

Sumiwi emphasized that village governments can utilize village funds from the central government to train posyandu cadres, accelerating stunting reduction efforts.

She explained that posyandu units are the closest public health facilities to communities, serving a wider range of beneficiaries in stunting reduction programs, such as prospective brides, pregnant women, and under-five children.

"However, collaboration in interventions is crucial to reducing stunting," she said.

Sumiwi emphasized the need for joint efforts by posyandu units, community health centers (puskesmas), village governments, and family-assistant team personnel from the National Population and Family Planning Agency (BKKBN).

Earlier, Deputy Minister of Health Dante Saksono Harbuwono highlighted the effectiveness of weight measurements at posyandu in identifying stunting in under-five children.

He also emphasized the importance of weight monitoring for stunted children to prevent developmental challenges.

According to the latest Indonesian Health Survey, the stunting rate in Indonesia in 2023 reached 21.5 percent, reflecting a decrease of 0.1 point compared to 21.6 percent in 2022. The government is aiming to bring down the stunting rate to 14 percent by the end of the year.

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Translator: Lintang Budiyanti, Raka Adji
Editor: Anton Santoso
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