Saturday, April 26, 2008

Sanitation problems hound RP

THE Water and Sanitation for East Asia of the World Bank yesterday warned that the absence of comfort rooms for 20 million Filipinos could result in illnesses, including schistosomiasis.

SEA-WB specialist Jemima Sy, in a health forum in Quezon City, said the shortage of toilets remains a major concern in the squatters’ colony, “home along da riles” and remote areas.

Studies conducted by SEA-WB showed that parts of East Asia, including the Philippines, are feared to be swamped with illnesses due to sanitation problems.

Sy said schistosomiasis, which usually strikes on children, is already in the country aside from diarrhea, acute gastroenteritis, iron deficiency and malnutrition. Rolando Santiago, sanitation engineer of the National Center for Disease Prevention and Control of the Department of Health, said the provinces with the lowest sanitation rate nclude Sulu, Lanao del Sur, Marinduque, Masbate, Zamboanga Sibugay, Maguindanao, Lanao del Norte, Pampanga and Nueva Ecija.

Santiago said local government officials should focus on sanitation problems as a gram of human waste is composed of 10 million viruses, a million bacteria, 1,000 parasite cysts and 100 parasite eggs that will become worms that affect children. By: Joel dela Torre - Journal online

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