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Appropriate Treatment of Diarrhoea - Fluids

Indicator Phrasing

% of children aged 8 - 23/ 59 months with diarrhoea in the last two weeks who were given additional fluids
See indicator in other languages

Indicator Phrasing

English: % of children aged 8 - 23/ 59 months with diarrhoea in the last two weeks who were given additional fluids

French: % d'enfants âgés de 8 à 23/59 mois souffrant de diarrhée au cours des deux dernières semaines qui ont reçu des liquides supplémentaires

Portuguese: % de crianças com idades entre 8 - 23/59 meses com diarreia nas últimas duas semanas a quem foram dados fluidos adicionais

Czech: % dětí ve věku 8-23/ 59 měsíců trpících během uplynulých 2 týdnů průjmem, kterým byl během léčby podáván zvýšený objem tekutin

What is its purpose?

Dehydration is among the major diarrhoea-related risks. However, many caregivers mistakenly believe that children with diarrhoea should drink less. This indicator assesses the proportion of caregivers following the correct practice.

How to Collect and Analyse the Required Data

Collect the following data by conducting individual interviews with a representative sample of the primary caregivers (mainly mothers). 



(ask the question only if the child had diarrhoea in the last two weeks)


Q1: I would like to know how much [name of the child] was given to drink when having diarrhoea. This includes breastmilk [mention breastmilk only if the child is younger than 2 years], Oral Rehydration Solution (ORS) and other liquids given with medicine. When [name of the child] had diarrhoea, was s/he given nothing to drink, less than usual to drink, about the same amount, or more than usual?


1) nothing to drink

2) less to drink

3) about the same

4) more to drink

5) does not remember


To calculate the indicator's value, divide the number of children given additional fluids by the total number of surveyed children. Multiply the result by 100 to convert it to a percentage. 

Important Comments

1) Consider also assessing the percentage of children with diarrhoea who received: i) more fluids and correctly prepared ORS and ii) more fluids, correctly prepared ORS and the same or a higher amount of food (i.e. the most recommended treatment). 


2) This indicator relies on an accurate age assessment. Since people often do not remember the exact dates of their children's birth, the data collectors should always verify the child's age. This can be done by reviewing the child's birth certificate, vaccination card or another document; however, since many caregivers do not have such documents (and since they can include mistakes), it is essential that your data collectors are able to verify the child’s age by using local events calendars. Read FAO’s Guidelines (see below) to learn how to prepare local events calendars and how to train data collectors in their correct use.

This guidance was prepared by People in Need ©

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