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Frequently Asked Questions
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What is Health Equity?
Health equity arises from access to the social determinants of health, specifically from wealth, power and prestige. Individuals who have consistently been deprived of these three determinants are significantly disadvantaged from health inequities, and face worse health outcomes than those who are able to access certain resources.
Why water and sanitation?
For many communities, water sources are usually far from their homes, and it typically falls to women and girls to spend much of their time and energy fetching water, a task which often exposes them to attack from men and even wild animals.
In the immediate environment, exposed faecal matter will be transferred back into people’s food and water resources, helping to spread serious diseases such as cholera. Beyond the community, the lack of effective waste disposal or sewerage systems can contaminate ecosystems and contribute to disease pandemics.
What is WASH?
This is the collective of water, sanitation and hygiene. These have profound wider socio-economic impacts, particularly for women and girls.
Is there return on investment in WASH programs?
Investment in water and sanitation services generates a quantifiable, positive return on investment through saved medical costs and increased productivity:
Urban basic drinking water: $3 return for every $1 invested.
Urban basic sanitation: $2.5 to $1
Rural basic drinking water: $7 to $1
Rural basic sanitation: $5 to $1
(Hutton et al. 2015)
What is water vulnerability?
Water vulnerability for this analysis relates to physical water scarcity risks (Baseline water stress; inter and seasonal variability; groundwater decline and droughts) and the water service level.
What is water stress?
Water stress is an outcome of water scarcity and refers to scarcity in terms of quality and accessibility. Water stress may manifest in conflict over water resources, over-extraction, or poor health and disease.