Research Institute of Ophthalmology, Egypt
Professor Salem had completed her Ph.D. since 17 years from Al Azher University Cairo and she is interested in nutrition and health promotion, she is the dean of community medicine department, Research Institute of Ophthalmology, Egypt.
Introduction: During pregnancy all women need more food, a varied diet, and micronutrient supplements. Inadequate weight gain during pregnancy often results in low birth weight. Pregnant women also require more protein, iron, iodine, vitamin A, folate, and other nutrients. Deficiencies of certain nutrients are associated with maternal complications and birth defects. Health care workers often lack adequate information to counsel pregnant women on how to meet increased nutrient requirements through dietary and behavioural changes and other health practices. Aims: This study was conducted to assess nutrition education provided to pregnant mothers and to identify the common nutritional health problems and their management as well as to determine health care staff knowledge regarding pregnant nutrition. Subjects and Methods: This cross sectional study was conducted in antenatal care clinic which was selected through multistage random sample, interview questionnaire with pregnant females and other tools were used to evaluate nutritional services and to achieve objectives, a pilot study was conducted to test the validity and reliability of the questionnaire. Results: Results showed that there were deficiency in nutritional education, and evaluation of malnutrition signs as well as nutritional history taking from pregnant females. Also health care staff knowledge regarding pregnant nutrition was insufficient. On the other hand hemoglobin percent monitoring and management was the best services provided. Recommendation: Nutrition monitoring and education to pregnant females in antenatal clinic is essential part of comprehensive health care and should be applied according to a standardized policy and procedures ,periodic training of health care staff especially heath educators is very essential.