AHD wins share of $1m global Healthcare Innovation Award
AHD wins share of $1m global Healthcare Innovation Award.
Observer Report Islamabad The Association for Humanitarian Development (AHD), a Hyderabad-based community organisation, has been awarded US$320,000 for a biological water-filtering initiative that provides hundreds of thousands of families with clean water.
The Pakistani group is one of four worldwide to have won a share of the 2017 Healthcare Innovation Award, funded by global healthcare company Glaxo Smith Kline (GSK).
The discussion covered the challenge of providing safe drinking water, how AHD’s innovation could be scaled to reach more people and the potential for it to spur other innovative health initiatives in Pakistan.
Currently, many rural communities in Pakistan have to drink contaminated water.
To expand access to safe water, AHD introduced a simple and replicable bio-sand water filter, known as a “Nadi” filter, to hundreds of vulnerable villages.
The filter is sourced and constructed from locally available materials, meaning that one unit, which serves a household of eight to ten people, costs just Rs 1,000-1,500.
Since launching in 2007, the Nadi Filter has provided clean and safe drinking water to 400,000 households.
A Khurshid Bhatti, Founder and CEO, AHD: “We are honoured to receive this Award in recognition of our efforts.
This ensures the Nadi filter remains available at a low-cost and can be adopted by families across the country.” Azizul Huq, Vice President and General Manager, GSK Pakistan: “The Nadi filter is a fantastic innovation, which can be easily replicated across Pakistan.
2b people drinking contaminated water: WHO
UNITED NATIONS – Against the backdrop of almost two billion people around the world relying on sources of drinking-water contaminated with faeces, the United Nations has called on countries to “radically” increase investments in water and sanitation infrastructure not only to protect their populations from deadly diseases but also to ensure that they are able to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
“Contaminated drinking-water is estimated to cause more than 500,000 diarrhoeal deaths each year and is a major factor in several neglected tropical diseases, including intestinal worms, schistosomiasis, and trachoma,” Maria Neira, the Director of Department of Public Health, Environmental and Social Determinants of Health at the UN World Health Organization (WHO), said in a statement on Thursday.
The UN report, Global Analysis and Assessment of Sanitation and Drinking-Water 2017, notes that while countries have increased their budgets for water, sanitation and hygiene at an average annual rate of about 4.9 per cent over the last three years, 80 per cent of countries have reported that the increase is still insufficient to meet nationally-defined targets for those services.
Therefore, in order to meet the ambitious SDG targets, which aim for universal access to safely managed water and sanitation services by 2030, countries need to use financial resources more efficiently as well as increase efforts to identify new sources of funding.
The Global Assessment also highlights that these efforts are particularly important for developing countries where current national coverage targets are based on achieving access to basic infrastructure and which may not necessarily provide continuously safe and reliable services.
According to estimates by the World Bank, investments in infrastructure need to triple to $114 billion per year – a figure which does not include operating and maintenance costs.While this funding gap is vast, there are recent examples of countries having demonstrated the ability to mobilize the needed resources to meet development targets.
of halving the proportion of people without an improved source of water, and 95 among them met the corresponding target for sanitation.
“Increased investments in water and sanitation can yield substantial benefits for human health and development, generate employment and make sure that we leave no one behind,” he said.
This news was published in The Nation newspaper.
Read complete newspaper of 14-Apr-2017 here.
Radical increase in water and sanitation investment required to meet development targets
Radical increase in water and sanitation investment required to meet development targets.
"Today, almost two billion people use a source of drinking-water contaminated with faeces, putting them at risk of contracting cholera, dysentery, typhoid and polio," says Dr Maria Neira, WHO Director, Department of Public Health, Environmental and Social Determinants of Health.
The report stresses that countries will not meet global aspirations of universal access to safe drinking-water and sanitation unless steps are taken to use financial resources more efficiently and increase efforts to identify new sources of funding.
Yet, 80% of countries report that water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) financing is still insufficient to meet nationally-defined targets for WASH services.
Planned investments have yet to take into account the much more ambitious SDG targets, which aim for universal access to safely managed water and sanitation services by 2030.
In order to meet the SDG global targets, the World Bank estimates investments in infrastructure need to triple to US $114 billion per year – a figure which does not include operating and maintenance costs.
Additional Findings: Official development assistance (ODA) disbursements for water and sanitation are increasing, but future investments are uncertain.
However, aid commitments for water and sanitation have declined since 2012 from US$ 10.4 billion to US$ 8.2 billion in 2015.
Considering the greater needs to make progress towards universal access to safely managed WASH services under the SDG targets, the possibility of future reductions in aid disbursements is at odds with global aspirations.
Safe drinking-water and sanitation are crucial to human welfare, by supporting health and livelihoods and helping to create healthy environments.