This weekend lured by the beautiful Spring weather I decided to take a trip out to the country with my husband. We found ourselves in Oxfordshire visiting my husband’s old College at Cuddesdon. . Needless to say during the course of the visit it was necessary to use the toilet or as my mother would say ‘the lavatory’ it was a new up to date clean toilet. As I was washing my hands I noticed a framed picture of a toilet in Nepal and reading he caption I realised that this toilet was ‘twinned’ with a new toilet in Nepal.
My words to many medical students over the years has been, ” Do not be under any illusion that being a doctor you will not save as many lives as the sewage and civil water engineers.”
Many people are surprised by the fact that the two biggest killers of children between 1 month and five years are pneumonia and diarrhea. It’s estimated that these alone account for up to 2 million deaths annually worldwide (Lancet 2012, GBD 2010).
Severe pneumonia and diarrhea in children are complex diseases of poverty, when children are exposed to germs in the air or contamination in their water or food. Diarrhea and pneumonia can be caused by one or a lethal mix of germs the gut and respiratory system. It’s made more complex due to harsh living conditions that impact children’s ability to cope – like poor air quality, a lack of access to sanitation, malnutrition and limited or no access to primary health care.
It’s out of order!
1 in 3 people across the world don’t have somewhere safe to go to the toilet. Bad sanitation is one of the world’s biggest killers: it hits women, children, old and sick people hardest. Every minute, three children under the age of five die because of dirty water and poor sanitation. And, right this minute, around half the people in the world have an illness caused by bad sanitation.
Every day, about 1,400 children under the age of five die of illnesses linked to unclean water and poor sanitation. That’s more than half a million a year – or about one a minute (Unicef)
Right now, more than 50 per cent of hospital beds in developing countries are filled with people who have an illness caused by poor sanitation or dirty water.
Women and girls suffer most
In Africa, half of young girls who drop out of school do so because they need to collect water – often from many miles away – or because the school hasn’t got separate toilets for boys and girls. Not having a loo puts people at risk of being bitten by snakes as they squat in the grass and makes women and girls a target for sexual assault as they go to the toilet in the open.
Toilet Twinning is raising funds to enable people living in poor communities to have clean water, a decent toilet, and to learn about hygiene – a vital combination that prevents the spread of disease, reduces the number of deaths among children, and brings hope for the future.
For a £60 donation, you can twin your toilet at home, work, school or church with a latrine in many countries throughout the World where there is poor sanitation. To read more about it click into the following link:-
We have a newly refurbished toilet in the surgery look out for with whom we will be twinning!
LET ME KNOW BY POSTING A COMMENT IF YOU HAVE DECIDED TO TWIN A LOO OR YOU CAN MAKE A CONTRIBUTION AT THE SURGERY.
Most of all be aware of your own personal hygiene especially handwashing see a previous blog