Nutritional status and personal hygiene of children living in the orphanages of Bhubaneswar: capital city of Odisha

Surendra Babu Reddy, Naresh Jyothula, Indhraja Kandula, Ganapathy Swamy Chintada


Background: Orphan’s children are vulnerable and neglected group in the society and are more prone to malnutrition. Aim is to assess the nutritional status, personal hygiene and demographic details of the children living in different orphanages in Bhubaneswar city.

Methods: A cross sectional study was conducted among the children of age group 6 to 14 years in the selected orphanages in Bhubaneswar from October 2015 to March 2016 using two stage stratified cluster random sample to select the orphanages and simple random sample to select study subjects. A pretested predesigned schedule was used to collect information regarding personal hygiene practices, anthropometric measurements of the children were taken and WHO reference growth charts were used to assess nutritional status. Pearson Chi-Square test was used to determine the association between personal hygiene and nutritional status.

Results: Out of 210 children, majority 57.7% were malnourished, 53.3% were stunted and malnutrition was higher among the boys than girls whereas the personal hygiene practices scores were better in girls than boys. Our study revealed a significant association between nutritional status and poor personal hygiene (p<0.05).

Conclusions: Malnutrition is highly prevalent in children living in orphanages and needs to be addressed. Nutritional status should be monitored regularly, which helps in early identification and timely intervention and this will improve nutritional status of children living in orphanages.


Orphan, Malnutrition, Orphanage, Personal hygiene

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