Health topics

Water and sanitation


Universal access to safe drinking water, sanitation and adequate hygiene (WaSH) services is essential to population health, welfare and development. In 2012, in the Region, 94 000 deaths were attributed to diarrheal infections from the use of unsafe water, poor sanitation and lack of hygiene. Another 14 000 deaths from malnutrition were traced back to a lack of access to adequate WaSH services. WaSH services need to be taken into account during disaster prevention and preparedness activities to avert adverse secondary health consequences in disaster-stricken areas.