Category Archives: Emergency Sanitation

2018 studies, reports and news updates on cholera prevention and control

The latest biweekly update contains journal articles, reports, etc. that have been published so far in 2018. Please let us know if you have additional studies and resources that should be added to this list:


Setting priorities for humanitarian water, sanitation and hygiene research: a meeting report. Conflict and Health, June 15, 2018.
In June 2017, the Research for Health in Humanitarian Crises (R2HC) programme of Elrha, convened a meeting of representatives from international response agencies, research institutions and donor organisations active in the field of humanitarian WASH to identify research priorities, discuss challenges conducting research and to establish next steps. Topics including cholera transmission, menstrual hygiene management, and acute undernutrition were identified as research priorities.

Cholera epidemic in Yemen, 2016–18: an analysis of surveillance data. The Lancet Global Health, June 2018.
Our analysis suggests that the small first cholera epidemic wave seeded cholera across Yemen during the dry season. When the rains returned in April, 2017, they triggered widespread cholera transmission that led to the large second wave. These results suggest that cholera could resurge during the ongoing 2018 rainy season if transmission remains active.

Editorial: No end to cholera without basic water, sanitation and hygiene. WHO Bulletin, May 2018.
A shared vision and unanimous agreement among Member States, partners and donors to prioritize broader social and environmental determinants of health, including water, sanitation and hygiene, is needed to end cholera.

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Recent Ebola research – May 30, 2018 updates

We will periodically update this page with Ebola research studies:

May 30, 2018 Updates 


Photo from the World Health Organization

A Method to Test the Efficacy of Handwashing for the Removal of Emerging Infectious Pathogens. Marlene K. Wolfe and Daniele S. Lantagne, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tufts University, June 2017.

Selection of a Biosafety Level 1 (BSL-1) surrogate to evaluate surface disinfection efficacy in Ebola outbreaks: Comparison of four bacteriophages. PLoS One, May 2017.

Surface Cleaning and Disinfection: Efficacy Assessment of Four Chlorine Types Using Escherichia coli and the Ebola Surrogate Phi6. Environmental Science & Technology, March 2017.

Handwashing and Ebola virus disease outbreaks: A randomized comparison of soap, hand sanitizer, and 0.05% chlorine solutions on the inactivation and removal of model organisms Phi6 and E. coli from hands and persistence in rinse water. PLoS One, February 2017.

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Ebola in the News

This page will feature recent news articles on the Ebola outbreak:

May 29, 2018 Updates


Photo from the World Health Organization

Children must be at heart of response to Ebola outbreak – Democratic …
4 days ago – Children must be at heart of response to Ebola outbreak News and Press … the risk of transmission in schools, including temperature taking and handwashing.”.

Ebola: How this virus sparked a global health revolution – CNN
3 days ago – “There are two defining epidemics of our time: the AIDS epidemic and Ebola,” said Peter Piot, director at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

Past use of disinfectants and PPE for Ebola could inform future …
5 days ago – Data from the 2014 Ebola virus outbreak at two Sierra Leone facilities reveal daily … strictwatersanitation, and hygiene (WASH) and infection prevention control …

Ebola | Ebola virus disease – World Health Organization
3 days ago – Ebola virus disease website: fact sheet, technical guidance, news. … WHO supports Ebolavaccination of high risk populations in the Democratic Republic of the …

What we know about fighting Ebola: A Q&A with expert Dr. Adam …
6 days ago – The global health community is better prepared to face the largest outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease since the 2014-2016 West African epidemic claimed more …

Ebola outbreak in the DR Congo: lessons learned – The Lancet
4 days ago – The Ebola virus outbreak appears to have started in the remote western DR … instructs residents on hand washing as a preventive measure against Ebola in …

Map of the Day: Every Historic Ebola Outbreak in the Democratic …
6 days ago – Today’s map comes from the World Health Organization, which released this graphic to help put into context the current ebola outbreak in the Democratic …




Recent news articles on the Ebola outbreak in DRC



An Emergency WASH update – March 15, 2018


March 20 – Solutions for Dirty Water. In this third part of its “Sustainable Water, Resilient Communities” series, co-hosted with Winrock International and the Wilson Center, the USAID-funded Sustainable Water Partnership (SWP) will present “Solutions for Dirty Water” on March 20. Moderated by SWP Director Eric Viala, experts will discuss approaches to meeting the challenges of poor water quality: improving sanitation and hygiene, preventing the spread of waterborne diseases after disasters, addressing agricultural pollution and increasing water supplies through wastewater reuse.

Panelists: Jon Freedman, Global Government Affairs Leader, SUEZ; Daniele Lantagne, Associate Professor, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Tufts University; Lisa Schechtman, Director of Policy and Advocacy, WaterAid America; Jon Winsten, Agricultural and Environmental Economist, Winrock International; Tracy Wise, WASH Sector Advisor, Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, USAID

April 6 – Water in Humanitarian Emergencies: Water: Systems, Science and Society (WSSS) 9th Annual Symposium: Tufts University. The event will feature discussions and breakout sessions on the role of innovation and diplomacy in addressing water concerns in humanitarian emergencies. The symposium will kick off with a keynote address by Martha Thompson on Puerto Rico’s disaster response, followed by two breakout sessions led by various water experts on the intersection of gender and water, infrastructure and investments, and waterborne disease outbreaks. Finally, the Symposium will conclude with a panel discussion on the water crisis in Cape Town, South Africa.


Taking emergency water, sanitation and hygiene to market. Oxfam Voices, March 2018. Esther Shaylor explains how Oxfam is working with other NGOs to share learning about providing emergency water, sanitation and hygiene using local markets.

Fast-acting antidote in sight for cholera epidemics. Science Daily, March 9, 2018. Groundbreaking discoveries regarding the onset of cholera are paving the way for a future, fast-acting antidote for cholera epidemics.

What You Need to Know About the Future of the Humanitarian Sector. Aid for Aid Workers, March 2018. My guest today, Sean Lowrie is the Director of START Network, has some forward thinking ideas around where the humanitarian sector is headed and what International NGO’s will need to do in order to adapt to these changes

Addressing Water, Sanitation and Disasters in the Context of the Sustainable Development Goals. UN Chronicle, March 2018. The resulting recommendations on key actions include: Raising disaster risk reduction and resilience to a higher level on the political agenda. Special Thematic Sessions on water and disasters should be organized biennially in the United Nations General Assembly.

Why we must engage women and children in disaster risk management. Sustainable Cities, March 2018. At the community level, disaster risk prevention should start with boys and girls. Success stories from Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Nepal, and Bangladesh show the impact of involving children and youth in disaster risk preparedness. Children have successfully participated in mapping hazards, raising awareness through radio and games, and influencing other children, teachers, parents and communities on how to reduce disaster risks.

Monitoring and evaluation framework for WASH market based humanitarian programming: guidance document. Oxfam, 2017. In order to gather evidence about the effectiveness and efficiency of market-based programmatic approaches compared with conventional humanitarian responses, there is a need for a systematic and standardised approach for monitoring and evaluation. To support the development of this standardized approach, Oxfam (with funding from USAID/OFDA) has commissioned the production of a monitoring and evaluation framework and associated IT tools.

Climate Change and Conflict: New Research for Defense, Diplomacy, and Development. This March 7, 2018 event was held at the Wilson Center. “The long-term trends toward a warming climate, more air pollution, biodiversity loss, and water scarcity are likely to fuel economic and social discontent – and possibly upheaval – through 2018,” the U.S. National Intelligence Council warns in its Worldwide Threat Assessment. Panelists discussed how can the state of the research help us understand and address these risks and what are the next steps for translating this expertise into new security practice.


Cholera: Revised cholera kits and calculation tool, World Health Organization. In 2016 WHO introduced the Cholera Kits. These kits replace the Interagency Diarrhoeal Disease Kit (IDDK) which had been used for many years. The Cholera Kit is designed to be flexible and adaptable for preparedness.

An Emergency WASH Group update

Dear Colleagues:

There are currently 136 members in the Emergency WASH Google Group. We have changed the settings on the Google Group so that you can now send a message directly to the group by sending an email to rather than having to log into the group to post an email. All messages will be reviewed first to make sure that no spam messages are sent. If you would like to join the Emergency WASH Google Group please send an email to request membership.


Water ConflictWater Currents, February 6, 2018. This issue contains open access articles and reports from 2017, as well as several news articles on water, conflict, and peacebuilding published so far in 2018. Also included are selected USAID resources on water-related conflict.

2018 annual review of the Blueprint list of priority diseasesWHO, February 2018. For the purposes of the R&D Blueprint, WHO has developed a special tool for determining which diseases and pathogens to prioritize for research and development in public health emergency contexts. This tool seeks to identify those diseases that pose a public health risk because of their epidemic potential and for which there are no, or insufficient, countermeasures.

Medical and health risks associated with communicable diseases of Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh 2017Intl Jnl Infectious Diseases, March 2018. Using the Rohingya people in Bangladesh as a case context, this perspective article synthesizes evidence in the published literature regarding the possible key health risks associated with the five main health and survival supporting domains, namely water and sanitation, food and nutrition, shelter and non-food items, access to health services, and information, for the displaced living in camp settlements in Asia.

Strong thirsts in fragile countries: walking the water scarce path of refugeesWorld Bank Water Blog, February 8, 2018. This blog post discusses a new initiative, Water Scarce Cities Initiative.

Physical Agents for DisinfectionGWPP Newsletter, February 2018. This chapter describes the most common methods of physical disinfection, their basis of action, the factors that impact their effective application, their effectiveness against pathogens, and basic design considerations.

Biogas Micro-Production from Human Organic Waste—A Research ProposalSustainability, January 2018. Organic waste (OW) management tackles the problem of sanitation and hygiene in developing countries and humanitarian camps where unmanaged waste often causes severe health problems and premature death. OW still has a usable energy content, allowing biogas production, potentially contributing to satisfy the local needs, e.g., cooking, lighting and heating.

Sodium hypochlorite dosage for household and emergency water treatment: updated recommendationsJournal Water & Health, February 2018. We recommend water from improved/low turbidity sources be dosed at 1.88 mg/L and used within 24 hours, and from unimproved/higher turbidity sources be dosed at 3.75 mg/L and consumed within 8 hours. Further research on field effectiveness of chlorination is recommended.

Communicating Risk in Public Health Emergencies: A WHO Guideline for Emergency Risk Communication (ERC) policy and practiceWHO, January 2018. The recommendations in these guidelines provide overarching, evidence-based guidance on how risk communication should be practised in an emergency. The recommendations also guide countries on building capacity for communicating risk during health emergencies.


Applied Research on Common Under Researched WASH Interventions Information for Potential Partners on Water TruckingTufts University, January 2018. Water trucking is one of a suite of water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) interventions implemented in emergencies, and is intended to rapidly provide water supply to affected populations. As described below, water trucking is considered a ‘common under researched WASH intervention’. Tufts University is currently seeking project partners implementing water trucking who would be interested in having existing water trucking programs evaluated.

Geospatial Images Improve Humanitarian Aid EffortsPOB, February 7, 2018. MSF is teaming up with experts at the University of Salzburg’s Department of Geoinformatics (Z_GIS) to apply geospatial technologies for social, economic and environmental purposes. Z_GIS is conducting pioneering research in the use of remote sensing such as satellite imagery with advanced image processing techniques to monitor populations. One of its key objectives is developing automated approaches to extracting population information from satellite images.


An Emergency WASH Update – January 30, 2018


Pollution Research Group – Faecal sludge management online course. This online course on faecal sludge management has been designed to impart knowledge on the important aspects that need to be taken into account when designing and operating a comprehensive FSM system. The course targets professionals who deal with planning, promoting, designing, operating or managing FS for residents in urban, peri-urban, slum or rural areas, in low income-countries and beyond. Start Date: 1 February 2018 | Duration: 16 weeks | Workload: 8 hours/week | Language: English | Cost: Free

Global Disaster Relief & Development Summit, September 5-6, 2018, Washington DC. The Global Disaster Relief & Development Summit strives to enable quicker and better response during crises and catastrophes by improving effectiveness, cost-efficiency and sustainability of aid operations.

11-15 April 2018, Global WASH Cluster Annual Meeting, Berlin, Germany – Once a year, Global WASH Cluster Meetings are held to offer an opportunity for the Strategic Advisory Group, the Cluster Advocacy and Support Team, partners and other stakeholders to meet and discuss key topics and issues from the previous six months.

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