Risk Factors and Resilience in the Developing World
One of many lessons to learn
This article summarizes the results of an intervention study with approximately 4,000 Zambian children, in which risk of helminth infection and related health problems were ameliorated with medication and micronutrient and vitamin supplementation. The results of this intervention were tracked with a newly developed cognitive assessment battery for Zambian school children in Grades 3–7.
The quantification of cognitive functioning manifested after the intervention indicated treatment-related improvements in the cognitive skill of following instructions. This skill is fundamental to success in school. It constitutes an important indicator of resilience in overcoming difficulties related to growing up and being educated under the pressure of the multiple risk factors characteristic of the developing world.