Water, Sanitation and Hygiene
Swiss TPH works on aspects of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) in countries where drinking water is scarce and where poor hygiene is a leading cause of infectious disease. WASH plays a major role in integrated approaches to fight helminth infections in Africa and Asia. Moreover, experts improve sanitation facilities in health centres or schools, teach pupils or household members in questions related to food and kitchen hygiene or assess people’s health risks arising from contaminated water bodies.
From Safe Drinking Water to Better Health
MSABI (maji safi kwa Afya Bora Ifakara!) is an NGO based in Ifakara in Tanzania. It develops and maintains water pumps and provides hygiene awareness programmes for villagers in the Morogoro region. It was awarded the “International ReSource Award for Resilience in Water Management 2016”. Swiss TPH is one of the strategic partners of MSABI and acts as scientific and public health advisor. The institute also supports MSABI in measuring the health impact of its intervention programmes in the areas of water, sanitation and hygiene.
Towards Bilharzia Elimination in Zanzibar and Pemba
Swiss TPH supports the government of Zanzibar to eliminate bilharzia in Zanzibar and Pemba islands. During a five-year study, experts diagnose and treat schoolchildren in 45 communities. They reduce the snail population acting as intermediate hosts and regularly assess changes in water and sanitation infrastructure. The study is likely to offer new insights into what has to be done to ultimately eliminate bilharzia disease apart from preventive chemotherapy only.
Latrines Protect the Rural Population in Lao PDR
Large parts of the rural population in Lao PDR suffer from chronic helminth diseases caused by a lack of sanitary facilities. People swim and wash themselves in stagnant water and fall victim to schistosomes the parasites causing bilharzia. Together with Laotian researchers, Swiss TPH showed that latrine building drastically reduces the infection with schistosomes.