An Emergency WASH Update – January 30, 2018


Pollution Research Group – Faecal sludge management online course. This online course on faecal sludge management has been designed to impart knowledge on the important aspects that need to be taken into account when designing and operating a comprehensive FSM system. The course targets professionals who deal with planning, promoting, designing, operating or managing FS for residents in urban, peri-urban, slum or rural areas, in low income-countries and beyond. Start Date: 1 February 2018 | Duration: 16 weeks | Workload: 8 hours/week | Language: English | Cost: Free

Global Disaster Relief & Development Summit, September 5-6, 2018, Washington DC. The Global Disaster Relief & Development Summit strives to enable quicker and better response during crises and catastrophes by improving effectiveness, cost-efficiency and sustainability of aid operations.

11-15 April 2018, Global WASH Cluster Annual Meeting, Berlin, Germany – Once a year, Global WASH Cluster Meetings are held to offer an opportunity for the Strategic Advisory Group, the Cluster Advocacy and Support Team, partners and other stakeholders to meet and discuss key topics and issues from the previous six months.


USAID Water Team Global Waters articles – January 2018

Hygiene in EmergenciesGHP, January 2018. In emergency settings, handwashing is critical to preventing the spread of disease and has high potential to reduce the health impact of disasters. For example, diarrhea is responsible for 25-40% of child deaths in emergencies. Ensuring proper handwashing with soap in emergency settings can also protect the progress made before an emergency.

Combating Cholera During Disasters InfographicUSAID, January 2018. During a disaster, water can become contaminated, sanitation services go down, health care systems are crippled, malnutrition rises, and people resort to unsafe hygiene practices.

Ebola virus disease fact sheetWHO, January 2018. The 2014–2016 outbreak in West Africa was the largest and most complex Ebola outbreak since the virus was first discovered in 1976. There were more cases and deaths in this outbreak than all others combined.

DRC cholera outbreak hampers humanitarian efforts, worries neighborsDevex, January 12, 2018. The national health emergency — which, to date, has caused more than 1,000 deaths among the 53,000 confirmed cases — is the country’s worst cholera outbreak in more than two decades.

Efficacy and effectiveness of water, sanitation, and hygiene interventions in emergencies in low- and middle-income countries: a systematic reviewWaterlines, January 2018. We conducted a systematic review of the published and grey literature on the efficacy and effectiveness of short-term WASH interventions in emergency response in low- and middle-income countries. For the majority of interventions, we found that WASH interventions consistently reduced both the risk of disease and transmission in emergency contexts; however, programme design and beneficiary preferences were important considerations to ensure WASH intervention efficacy and effectiveness. Critical programme design characteristics included simple interventions that were appropriately timed, community-driven, and had linkages between relief and development. Barriers and facilitators to WASH interventions in outbreak response were taste and smell of treated water, communication methods, inaccurate perception of efficacy, and trust/fear.

Water, sanitation, and hygiene interventions in outbreak response: a synthesis of evidenceWaterlines, January 2018. Critical programme design characteristics included simple interventions that were appropriately timed, community-driven, and had linkages between relief and development. Beneficiary preferences, barriers, and facilitators to WASH interventions in outbreak response were taste and smell of water treatment, communication methods, inaccurate perception of efficacy, and trust/fear. Research on commonly implemented but severely under-researched WASH interventions is recommended. It is also recommended that responders implement interventions that are: efficacious, simple, well-timed, community-driven, link relief and development, and address barriers and facilitators to use with communities.

Pit Latrines or Container Based Toilets? A Cost-Benefit Analysis comparing two approaches to improving sanitation access in urban areas of HaitiCopenhagen Consensus Center, 2017. The intervention using the container based sanitation service yields the higher benefit cost ratio (BCR), providing benefits that are approximately equal to the costs, though economies of scale in increased coverage would drive benefits above costs. The CBS intervention is also the option that may promote intervention compliance and ecological benefits that are not included in this analysis due to the lack of specific quantitative data.


Magic Towel – hand washing the smart wayHumanitarian Innovation Fund.  The idea is to add a permanently bonded anti-microbial treatment to a durable fabric. Dip the towel in water and then rub your hands thoroughly to transfer pathogens to the towel where they will be killed. The towel does not need soap and saves 95% of the water. The towel remains effective unless damaged or lost. The field phase will be engaged only if we are successful in proving in the laboratory that the Magic Towel™ is as efficient as a handwashing tool as water and soap. The field trial will focus on user acceptance and behaviour change communication and will be performed in a collaboration between Real Relief, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), and the Danish Refugee Council. The field evaluation is scheduled to take place in Markazi refugee camp in Djibouti.


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