School children eating.jpg​Impact of Vitamin A Deficiency 
Vitamin A deficiency is the leading cause of preventable blindness in children and inadequate vitamin A contributes to a needlessly high level risk of disease and death and contributes to child deaths resulting from common childhood infections such as diarrhoeal disease and measles. Vitamin A deficiency also causes impaired immune function, poor iron metabolism and acute respiratory infections.   

Global Scale ​
Vitamin A deficiency affects an estimated 85 million (7% of) school-age children and is a public health problem in more than half of all countries especially in Africa and South East Asia.  According to the World Health Organization (WHO) an estimated 250 million preschool children are vitamin A deficient. An estimated 250,000 to 500,000 of vitamin A deficient children become blind every year, half of them dying within 12 months of losing their sight. 

Addressing vitamin A deficiency is crucial for child survival, supplying adequate vitamin A in high risk areas can significantly reduce mortality. WHO recommends vitamin A deficiency programmes must include dietary improvement and food fortification over the long term. 

Vitamin A Resources