|On World Water Day, PAHO Urges Greater Attention to Urban Water Management|
Access to Water, Sanitation Can Reduce Disease by 80 Percent
Washington, D.C., March 22, 2011 (PAHO) – On the occasion of World Water Day, the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) called on governments, organizations, communities and individuals to focus greater attention on urban water management, and especially on the impact of urban population growth, industrial growth, national disasters and instabilities related to climate change on urban water systems.
Photo PAHO/WHO David Spitz
Luis Augusto Galvão, manager of PAHO's Area of Sustainable Development and Environmental Health, said that access to water and sanitation services can reduce water-related diseases such as diarrhea and cholera by up to 80 percent.
"In Latin America and the Caribbean, some 105 million people have no access to basic sanitation, and the majority of these people are women, indigenous people or older adults living in rural areas or on the outskirts of major cities," Galvão said in a recorded message. Access to water and sanitation can reduce the incidence of diarrhea, for example, by 50 percent, he noted.
Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization