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Safer drinking water and better sanitation could lower disease burden by 9%, says WHO

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: (Published 30 June 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a629
  1. John Zarocostas
  1. 1Geneva

    Better access to safe drinking water and improvements in sanitation and hygiene could prevent about 9.1% of the total burden of disease worldwide, or 6.3 % of all deaths, a report from the World Health Organization estimates.

    The report, which provides country by country estimates of the prevalence of disease in 192 nations, concludes that 80% of the world’s cases of diarrhoea are attributable to “unsafe water, inadequate sanitation and insufficient hygiene.”

    “These result in 1.5 million deaths each year, most being children,” it says.

    Moreover, the …

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