Self-Assessment Questions (SAQs) for Study Session 16

Now that you have completed this study session, you can assess how well you have achieved its Learning Outcomes by answering the questions below. Write your answers in your Study Diary and discuss them with your Tutor at the next Study Support Meeting. You can check your answers with the Notes on the Self-Assessment Questions at the end of this Module.

Read Case Study 16.1 and then answer the questions below.

Case Study 16.1 for SAQ 16.1

Jemel is a six-week-old infant. His weight is 4.5 kg. His axillary temperature is 37°C. His mother has brought Jemel to the health post because he has diarrhoea and a rash. It is Jemel’s first visit for this illness. The health worker checks for signs of possible bacterial infection. Jemel’s mother says that he has not had convulsions. The health worker checks his breathing and counts 55 breaths per minute. There is no chest in-drawing or grunting, the fontanelle is not bulging, and there is no pus coming from either ear. The umbilicus looks normal. Jemel does not have a fever and his movements are normal. The health worker notices some small skin pustules on Jemel. When asked about Jemel’s diarrhoea, his mother says that it began three days ago, but there is no blood in the stool.

Jemel begins crying but when his mother puts him to her breast, he stops and begins feeding normally. When she stops, he begins crying again. Jemel’s eyes look normal (not sunken). When the skin of his abdomen is pinched, it goes back slowly.

Jemel’s mother says she has no difficulty feeding him and that he breastfeeds about five times in 24 hours. She says that she gives him other drinks and food. The weight-for-age measurement shows that Jemel is not underweight for his age. However, since he is feeding fewer than eight times in 24 hours and is taking other foods and drinks, the health worker decides to assess breastfeeding. Jemel’s mother agrees to this and the health worker observes that positioning and attachment of Jemel while he is feeding are both good. When Jemel stops feeding, the health worker looks in his mouth, she does not see any ulcers or white patches.

SAQ 16.1 (tests Learning Outcomes 16.1, 16.2 and 16.3)

  • a.Which Assess and Classify chart would you use for Jemel?
  • b.What problems do you assess Jemel as having?
  • c.How would you classify Jemel’s problems?
  • d.What advice will you give to Jemel’s mother?


  • a.You would use the chart for the young infant, because Jemel is less than two months old.
  • b.Jemel has three problems:
    • Diarrhoea
    • Skin rash/pustules
    • Feeding problems.
  • c.You should have classified these problems as follows:
    • Diarrhoea with some sign of dehydration because Jemel is irritable and restless and his skin pinch goes back slowly. Thus the classification is some dehydration
    • Local bacterial infection because Jemel only has some skin pustules.
  • d.You would advise Jemel’s mother as follows:
    • When she should return immediately to the health post
    • That she should return for a follow-up visit in two days if the skin pustules are not improving
    • Give fluids to treat diarrhoea on treatment Plan B
    • Advise her to increase the frequency of feeding
    • Tell her to empty one breast completely before switching to the other
    • Tell her to increase the frequency of feeding during and after illness
    • Counsel the mother on exclusive breastfeeding.

Advise the mother how to treat Jemel’s local infections at home. Ask good checking questions to ensure that she understand the advice that you give her.

Summary of Study Session 16