Water, sanitation and hygiene

Health workers in Ethiopia pose for WASH photo

Primary prevention, control of NTDs and management of NTD-related disabilities rely heavily on access to safe water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH). There are numerous NTD transmission routes that can be interrupted with improved WASH, including trachoma, schistosomiasis, soil-transmitted helminthiasis (STH) and Guinea worm. In addition, improved WASH is vital to NTD-related wound and morbidity management and disability prevention, for example in leprosy, lymphatic filariasis and Buruli ulcer. 

Therefore, as endorsed by the WHO roadmap for NTDs, access to safe WASH services are key for the prevention, intensified control, management and elimination of NTD. Though, there is still a great need for operational research on the feasibility and effectiveness of pairing specific WASH interventions with specific NTDs.

Objectives of the WASH group

1.    To advocate to policymakers, planners and funding partners, the importance and impact of WASH on NTD outcomes.
2.    To provide technical guidance and support to the NNN on WASH practices, effective WASH programming, policy and practices, and other cross-cutting issues and considerations for scale-up of WASH activities to achieve 2020 targets.  
3.    To support the WHO NTD department to integrate WASH activities into NTD programming, policy and practice.
4.    To support the WHO WASH department to promote relevant opportunities for engagement in NTD programming, policy and practice.
5.    To identify and communicate opportunities for the WASH and NTD communities to engage and seek collaboration.
6.    To increase WASH organisations membership of the disease-specific coordination groups and through them, representation within the NNN.

The WASH group organise around four task teams: Documenting Best Practice, Logic Models, Behaviour Change and Policy.

You can read the terms of reference for more information on each task team. You can download the summary card here.