The global acute malnutrition rate is the percentage of under-five children below 80% (or below -2Z scores) weight for height and/or with oedema. In the acute stages of an emergency this rate may be estimated approximately in a rapid nutritional assessment with a MUAC (mid-upper arm circumference) survey by nutrition staff. Acute food insecurity: A population or livelihood group is considered acutely food insecure if: 1) people experience a large reduction in their major source of food and are unable to make up the difference through copying strategies; 2) the prevalence of malnutrition is abnormally high for the time of year, and this cannot be accounted for by either health or care factors; 3) a large proportion of the population uses marginal or unsustainable coping strategies; 4) people use 'coping' strategies that are damaging their livelihoods in the longer term, or incur some other unacceptable cost, such as acting illegally or immorally. There is no established equivalence between the levels of global acute malnutrition and acute food security used in the scoring system for this indicator. They are used here to indicate food and nutrition problems in very broad terms for informing analysis within the WASH cluster. Very High: Global acute malnutrition >14% among under-fives and/or acute food insecurity for >75% of the population. High: Global acute malnutrition 10-14% among under-fives and/or acute food insecurity for 51 75% of the population. Moderate: Global acute malnutrition 5-9% among under-fives and/or acute food insecurity for 25- 50% of the population. Low: Global acute malnutrition <5% among under-fives and acute food insecurity for <25% of the population
Low/ Moderate/ High/ Very High
disaggregated by sex and age
Threshold / Standard
Malnutrition and lack of food increase vulnerability to WASH-related diseases and are a key factor in determining the priority of intervention. In addition, acute food insecurity is likely to oblige people to trade resources, including items such as soap, water containers and mosquito nets, in exchange for food.
Guidance for pre-crisis/baseline