WHO’s new report: “Diarrhoea: why children are still dying and what can be done”
While this is being covered everywhere , I thought it is worth mentioning. It seems important that in this report WHO is stressing Zink tablets in conjunction the oral rehydration solution (ORS) The tables and charts provide excellent statistic for fundraisers and agencies wanting to bring help and awareness. For those in the field there are important points to note but ones in the field may ask “tell us something we don’t know”
Recognition of the reality that “WASH/WATSAN” address seems to be following the same slow path of Global Warming (and other critical realities) , taking its time to come to be mainstream and get the energy it deserves. Hopefully the material presented within shall be an effective red flag to wave to get recognition and resources.
the publication Diarrhoea: why children are still dying and what can be done is available in pdf format for viewing
from the press release:
Past success and present needs
Campaigns targeting childhood diarrhoea in the 1970s and 1980s achieved success by scaling up the use of oral rehydration solution (ORS) to prevent dehydration and by educating caregivers. In spite of the promising results of these campaigns, in recent years the international community has shifted its focus to other global emergencies. There is now an urgent need to focus once more on preventing and treating diarrhoea.
Treatment with ORS and zinc tablets
WHO and UNICEF recommend treating diarrhoea with low-osmolarity ORS and zinc tablets, which decrease the severity and duration of the attack. These treatments are simple, inexpensive and life-saving.
Access to clean water and good hygiene practices are extremely effective in preventing childhood diarrhoea. Hand washing with soap has been shown to reduce the incidence of diarrhoeal disease by over 40 per cent, making it one of the most cost-effective interventions for reducing child deaths from this neglected killer.
from the publication:
For a number of years, there was one zinc product that met quality standards for international procurement by UNICEF. Zinc is now procured by UNICEF, governments and
other agencies and is manufactured locally in a handful of countries. However, meeting policy and regulatory requirements for importing a new product continues to present challenges for zinc introduction in many countries. Moreover, changing child health treatment recommendations nationally can also be difficult.
Compounding the problem is the fact that initial start-up funds for these new treatments can be significant, and beyond the scope of regular health budgets. In addition, many countries are hesitant to buy zinc because they have little experience with it as part of diarrhoea management programmes: They are unsure of the demand and are reluctant to devote funds to one-time start-up activities, such as developing training materials. ….
The challenges of scaling up zinc and increasing usage rates of ORS are steep, but not prohibitive. A renewed call to action is needed to ensure that increasing coverage
of diarrhoea treatment interventions becomes an international
pulications Sources: Global Zinc Task Force, 2009; UNICEF Supply Division, 2009.