PMNCH Knowledge Summary #30 Water, sanitation and hygiene - the impact on RMNCH*

Water, sanitation and hygiene - the impact on RMNCH

As African Ministers on Water and development partners meet under the guidance of the African Ministers Council on Water and the African Union Commission to discuss and seek resources for Africas water resources and sanitation challenges, a new knowledge summary on Water Sanitation and Hygiene highlights the impact of WASH investments on reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health.

The knowledge summary notes a clear link between unsafe water, sanitation and hygiene and poor health outcomes for women and children. It notes for instance that approximately half a million children die every year of diarrhoeal disease caused by unsafe water and poor hygiene practices. It underlines how creating equitable, safe, and sustainable access to water, sanitation and hygiene benefits both the community at large and women and children in particular.

This Knowledge Summary will provide ministers with crucial information on how integrating WASH programmes into health services and facilities, in addition to improving access to WASH within communities, can decrease morbidity and mortality rates amongst women and children. The material also shares crucial information on what works to better RMNCH outcomes through improved WASH, and how integrating and prioritising WASH can help to ensure that communities and individuals are reached.

The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH) encourages partners to use this material, which was created in partnership with a wide range of stakeholder, to advocate for WASH interventions, which are shown to have the potential to address gendered inequities and bring about lasting and positive change for women, children, and the communities they live amongst, crucial to the success of the post-2015 sustainable development agenda.

Note: Full text and all graphs, tables and references for each Knowledge Summary are available only on the PDF version