Class 10 student develops app to gauge malnutrition

Class 10 student develops app to gauge malnutrition

Ayush Gharat

The plight of malnourished and underprivileged children has moved this 15-year-old student who has developed an app to tackle the scourge.

The student, Ayush Gharat, has won worldwide appreciation for his app, mNutrition, and has been invited by the state Minister of Health and Family Welfare Shivananda Patil for a discussion to see how the idea could be implemented in the state.

Gharat is a certified Android developer was inspired to build the app when he saw the struggles of the underprivileged children during a school trip.

READ: Malnutrition: When the system fails children

“I would be more than happy to hear your thoughts about eradicating malnutrition. I congratulate you on the development of this app and would be interested to see if we can collaborate,” Patil said.

mNutrition helps diagnose malnutrition in children below five years.

“The World Health Organisation (WHO) has laid down certain guidelines for diagnosing malnutrition by comparing the height, weight and age of an individual,” Gharat told DH.

“It can be calculated minor, moderate and severe malnutrition.”

Since the WHO tables could be very complex for Anganwadi workers and mNutrition can help cut down manual errors in calculation. “Sometimes there’re errors in entering numbers and sometimes the handwriting of those giving the data can’t be understood. mNutrition can eliminate all these,” he said.

While malnutrition is
affecting two in five children in urban areas, there is very little awareness about the issue, he said.

The class 10 student designed the app, while his parents did the proof-reading. Gharat is also among the participants from across the globe who took part in a competition organised by Google.

How mNutrition works

Anganwadi or Asha workers, who will find the app easy to use, can enter the data such as the child’s height, weight and age to get the level of malnutrition. Gharat hopes to improve the app further to offer solutions for a particular range of malnourishment.