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Strategy on iodine defficiency disorders finalized

Sarajevo, 21.09.2006. – National Strategy to eliminate Iodine Deficiency Disorders (IDD) has been publicly presented yesterday at the Roundtable organized by Public Health Institute of the BIH Federation.  The representatives of governmental and public institutions (health, education, veterinary and legislation), UNICEF, WHO, salt producers and consumers associations, were involved in Strategy development.

UNICEF in BIH supported both the Strategy development and the Roundtable.

Existing policies on quality monitoring result in different approaches to production and distribution of salt in BIH. Consequently, the poor monitoring and control system, disrespect of policies and laws as well as usage of poor quality salt, result in increased level of goiter and other IDD in BIH.

General goal of the Strategy is to eradicate IDD by the end of 2010. The specific goals are:


  • Harmonization of the existing and new policies on IDD
  • Improvement of salt quality monitoring
  • Raised awareness on importance of usage of iodized salt among professionals
  • Raised awareness on importance of usage of iodized salt among population
  • Continued and periodical monitoring of iodine status of the population


Various documents show BIH was affected by the goiter in the past; the disease that appears most frequently as the result of iodine deficiency. The newest data show moderate level of goiter in BIH. Goiter has been found with 7% of school children in BIH. The rural population is the most affected.

Although the most efficient prevention of IDD is usage of properly iodized salt, the researches show only 40% of BIH population actually uses healthy salt.

Since 1999, UNICEF in BIH supports researches on IDD, as well as the education of personnel and establishment of monitoring mechanisms, policies and legislation encompassing this Strategy.

UNICEF's Regional Advisor for IDD, Mr. Arnold Timmer participated in the Round table aiming to help to establish the monitoring mechanisms and assessment of iodine situation of BIH population. Mr. Timmer will also visit Tuzla Salt Factory on 21.09.2006 and laboratory for examination of iodine in urine, in Mostar, on 22.09.2006.




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