Stakeholder Perspectives on Barriers and Facilitators on the Implementation of the 1000 Days Plus Nutrition Policy Activities in Ghana

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021 May 17;18(10):5317. doi: 10.3390/ijerph18105317.


Optimizing nutrition in the preconception and 1000 days periods have long-term benefits such as higher economic productivity, reduced risk of related non-communicable diseases and increased health and well-being. Despite Ghana's recent progress in reducing malnutrition, the situation is far from optimal. This qualitative study analyzed the maternal and child health nutrition policy framework in Ghana to identify the current barriers and facilitators to the implementation of nutrition policies and programs relating to the first 1000 days plus. Data analyzed included in-depth interviews and focus group discussions conducted in Ghana between March and April 2019. Participants were composed of experts from government agencies, civil society organizations, community-based organizations and international partners at national and subnational levels. Seven critical areas were identified: planning policy implementation, resources, leadership and stakeholders' engagement, implementation guidance and ongoing communication, organizational culture, accountability and governance and coverage. The study showed that, to eradicate malnutrition in Ghana, priorities of individual stakeholders have to be merged and aligned into a single 1000 days plus nutrition policy framework. Furthermore, this study may support stakeholders in implementing successfully the 1000 days plus nutrition policy activities in Ghana.

Keywords: 1000 days plus; Ghana; Sub-Saharan Africa; barriers; first 1000 days; health policy implementation; maternal child health; nutrition; qualitative research; stakeholder analysis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Focus Groups
  • Ghana
  • Health Policy
  • Humans
  • Noncommunicable Diseases*
  • Nutrition Policy
  • Qualitative Research