WaterAid unveils health study on WASH in Pakistan

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Islamabad
WaterAid’s latest Health Study, “Determining the Health Cost of Inadequate Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene in Pakistan,” was unveiled in Islamabad today, marking a significant step towards addressing critical public health challenges.
Led by Dr. Abid Aman Burki from Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), the study sheds light on the economic burden of illnesses such as malaria, diarrhea, and typhoid due to inadequate access to Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) facilities. Key findings underscore a staggering household cost of PKR 116.13 billion, with lower-income households bearing the brunt of the burden. Esteemed guests, including Professor Dr. Meher Taj Roghani, Member of Senate Standing Committee on National Health Services, Regulations, Pakistan emphasised the urgency of addressing the nexus between health and WASH.
The insightful panel discussion featured experts such Dr. Masood Jogezai, Technical Consultant, Ministry of National Health Services Regulations and Coordination; Itsuro Takahashi, WASH Manager, UNICEF; Dr. Shahzeb Mirza, Assistant Director, M&E, Health Department, Govt of Sindh; and Dr. Abid Qaiyum Suleri, Executive Director, SDPI.
Muhammad Fazal, Head of Program Strategy and Policy at WaterAid, emphasised that recent research studies have highlighted that poor WASH is one of the major cause of morbidity and mortalities in Pakistan that requires all of us to take collective actions to ensure access to safe WASH for better health and nutrition of people of Pakistan.
Furqan Ahmed, Interim, Country Director of WaterAid Pakistan, emphasized the urgency of addressing climate change’s impact on WASH and public health, stating, ‘Together, let us continue our collective efforts to prioritise WASH interventions from a health perspective and work towards achieving universal access to sustainable and safe WASH services in Pakistan.