WASH Remains Critical To Health Security
Daily Caller: The Congo’s Ebola Outbreak Highlights a Big Mistake in Global Health Security
Lindsay Denny, senior public health program associate for the Center for Global Safe WASH at Emory University and technical adviser for Global Water 2020
“…The absence of water/sanitation/hygiene is a daily threat. … It is not some unpronounceable drug that alone will prevent or contain everything from neonatal infections to pandemics like Ebola. It’s soap and water, the single-most effective method for containing the millions of germs living within the walls of a hospital. That makes handwashing a particularly powerful and cost-effective tool for doctors, nurses, and midwives around the world — as it should, quite literally, be at their fingertips. But it is not. … Health security clearly requires that sustainable water, sanitation, and good hygiene practice be the non-negotiable part of health care everywhere, and that certainly includes inside hospitals and health care facilities. WASH remains the untapped and cost-effective opportunity to improve health security for our own sake as well as the tireless work of frontline health care workers who defend us all. Its global neglect is reckless” (3/20).