WaterAid International

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Meeting: 
Seventy-second World Health Assembly (A72/1)
Agenda Item: 
- Water, sanitation and hygiene in health care facilities
Statement: 

Honourable Chair and Delegations,

It is time to stop accepting the unacceptable.

WaterAid warmly welcomes the Resolution on water, sanitation and hygiene in health care facilities. We reiterate the urgency the Resolution outlines to address the WASH in health care facilities’ crisis.

New data from WHO and UNICEF shows that almost 900 million people must seek care at health facilities with no water, 1.5 billion people must seek care where no toilets are available and almost half of facilities do not have hand hygiene stations at points of care. Limited data exist for healthcare waste management and cleaning and what does exist, indicates conditions are dire.

Without immediate action, targets on AMR, maternal and newborn health and UHC will not be met.

WaterAid urges Member States to take immediate action to –
• Adopt and implement the Resolution recommendations
• Commit financing, both domestic and through development assistance, to drive the step change required to tackle this crisis
• Target areas most in need including rural facilities and overcrowded hospitals
• Ensure services leave no one behind through prioritising vulnerable health care users including women, newborns and people with disabilities

WaterAid stands ready to support Member States, building on our existing work in more than 12 countries to improve WASH as part of health system-strengthening to achieve safe health care for all.

Thank you.