02/12/2014 by Emily Hockenhull
In 2013, a national survey was carried out in Sudan, covering all 18 states and all accessible localities within those states. Data was collected during June, July and November and results were endorsed by federal Ministry of Health on 30th December 2013. The survey used an area-based (or spatially-based) sampling approach, and was designed to give accurate results for all indicators measured over small geographical areas. Prior to this survey, results have only been available in Sudan at state level, however for a better understanding of deprivation and inequity there was a need for information within states in order to identify worse-off areas, or ‘hot-spots’. Two pilot pilot S3M surveys were conducted in Sudan prior to the national survey and it was shown that state level estimates for malnutrition mask great variations within the state. This highlighted the need for a methodology capable of estimating prevalence of malnutrition over small areas that are geographically identifiable to allow mapping of results. The national Simple Spatial Surveying Methodology (S3M) survey was carried out to collect detailed and current data on nutrition status and other health, water and sanitation variables that may affect nutrition status to ensure a strong evidence-base for expansion of multi-sectorial services to combat malnutrition. The S3M methodology was chosen because of its ability to give detailed information for small geographical areas – results are available at sub-locality level for this survey – and its ability to map results making targeting of interventions possible. Results have been in use throughout 2014, since they were endorsed at the end of 2013. The full report has recently been approved by the federal Ministry of Health and is now available here, a summary of key findings can be found here.