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close this bookEffectiveness of Vitamin A Supplementation in the Control of Young Child Morbidity and Mortality in Developing Countries - Nutrition policy discussion paper No. 13 (UNSSCN, 1993, 140 p.)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentUnited Nations - Administrative Committee on Coordination - Subcommittee on Nutrition (ACC/SCN)
View the documentForeword
View the documentAcknowledgements
View the documentSignators of the Report
View the documentAbstract
View the documentSummary
View the document1. Introduction, Statement of Purpose and Organization of the Report
Open this folder and view contents2. Epidemiology of Vitamin A Deficiency
Open this folder and view contents3. Vitamin A and Biological Functions: Consideration of Possible Biological Bases of Morbidity and Mortality Effects
Open this folder and view contents4. Controlled Trials of Vitamin and Morbidity in Young Children
Open this folder and view contents5. Vitamin A and Young Child Mortality
View the document6. Discussion and Conclusions
View the documentReferences Cited
View the documentReview Annex: Assessments Offered by Invited Reviewers
Open this folder and view contentsTechnical Annex


We express our sincere appreciation to those original investigators who responded to our questions and provided us with access to unpublished reports and draft manuscripts, and who, in some cases, ran additional analyses of their data to provide us with specific information. We are fully cognizant of the fact that secondary reviewers can never fully appreciate the subtleties of original field studies and we can only say that we have tried to honour their data in our interpretations.

We are indebted also to Dr. Sonya Rabeneck of the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) who assisted us in many ways. The proposal for this review arose at the United Nations ACC/Subcommittee on Nutrition and its Advisory Group on Nutrition. Many of the United Nations and bilateral agency representatives in those discussions were anxious that the project go ahead. It was CIDA that accepted the responsibility for financing the work but we express appreciation to all for the wide base of support that has been given to us.

As co-Chairmen of the project, Dr. Martorell and I express our appreciation to all members of the Technical Advisory Group who struggled through the mountains of paper that came to us and contributed heavily to the development of this project. We are appreciative also of the specific contribution of Dr. Bart Harvey who served as Research Associate for the project. Finally we note that our first meeting we had the benefit of the participation of Dr. Barbara Underwood and Dr. Sue Horton as consultants. Dr. J-P Habicht was an original member of the TAG but was unable to attend any meetings. Although he felt obliged to withdraw from membership because of this, we appreciate his critical comments in the early stages of planning.

Above all, we appreciate and respect the contribution made by the more than 175,000 children, and their families, who participated in the mortality and morbidity trials reviewed in this report. We trust that their contribution to improved knowledge of the role of vitamin A in the health and survival of children now alive and yet to be born, will be judged to have been worthwhile.

It is to those children that we dedicate this report.

George H. Beaton
August 1993