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Open Access Comparison of a positive deviant inquiry with a case-control study to identify factors associated with nutritional status among Afghan refugee children in Pakistan

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We compared the positive deviance (PD) approach in Save the Children's field guide with a case-control study (CCS) to identify behaviors associated with good nutritional status in Afghan refugee children 6 to 24 months of age in the Northwest Frontier Province (NWFP), Pakistan. The positive deviance inquiry (PDI), utilizing observations and interviews with mothers, fathers, and secondary caregivers in eight households, identified 12 feeding, caring, and health-seeking behaviors that were not widely practiced. The CCS, using the same selection criteria and content as the PDI with 50 mother-child pairs not in the PDI, yielded six significant associations with good nutritional status. Both the PDI and CCS detected feeding behaviors. The PDI alone identified complex phenomena (active feeding and maternal affect). The CCS alone confirmed the beneficial use of health services. The PD approach was an affordable, participatory, and valid method to identify feeding behaviors and other factors associated with good nutrition in this context.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2002

More about this publication?
  • Established in 1978, the Food and Nutrition Bulletin (FNB) is a peer-reviewed journal published quarterly by the Nevin Scrimshaw International Nutrition Foundation.

    The focus of the journal is to highlight original scientific articles on nutrition research, policy analyses, and state-of-the-art summaries relating to multidisciplinary efforts to alleviate the problems of hunger and malnutrition in the developing world.

    Food and Nutrition Bulletin's 2012 Impact Factor: 2.106

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