For household members under age 5, HWCWTAPCT (HC7) reports their weight-for-age percentile, based on smoothed percentile growth charts by age and sex developed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
Low weight-for-age, or "underweight," is an indicator of chronic and/or acute malnutrition. The 5th percentile on growth charts has often been used as a screening cutoff to identify infants and children at greater nutritional and health risk.
HWCWEIGHT (HC2) reports the young household member's weight as measured by DHS personnel. The related variable AGEMOHHLT5 (HC1) reports age in months at the time of measurement.
For an alternative measure of wasting in terms of weight-for-age using the same reference population, see HWCWAZNCHS (HC8). HWCWAZNCHS reports the difference between the young household member's weight and the median weight of the CDC reference population of the same age and sex, expressed in units equal to one standard deviation of the reference population's distribution.