Clean water, just as is the basic necessity for the survival of life, is also the basic requirement for the smooth functioning of a hospital and healthcare facility. The hospital needs a 24/7 supply of clean water to carry out the day and night activities and operations. Unavailability of clean water in hospitals spread diseases and germs which are a great threat to public health.
Many hospitals in Pakistan have no access to clean water and people are suffering from diseases that are caused due to dirty water. Almost, 80 % of diseases are water-borne which are caused because of consumptions and use of dirty water. Therefore, dirty water is the leading cause of death. The infants’ survival rate in healthcare centers with inadequate, unhygienic and polluted water is alarmingly high.
The unavailability of clean water in hospitals badly affects the sanitation system of the hospital. Poor sanitation is directly proportional to the spreading of various diseases. Diseases like cholera, diarrhea, dysentery, hepatitis A, typhoid, and polio are all contracted and spread due to polluted water. These diseases affect health to a large extent and may even cause death.
Hospitals with clean water are able to maintain the hygienic condition of the hospital and hospitals with the unavailability of clean water is unable to maintain basic waste management services. In short, the disposal system of the hospital gets worse, which increases the chance of contracting diseases in the patients and even in the attendants of the patients.
Clean water is required for cleaning of hospitals, for sanitation, for disinfecting parts of the hospital, for consumption and for food preparation for patients and hospital staff. Doctors need clean water to wash hands before and after attending the various patients. They have to wash hands with great care before the operation of the patient. Patients also need clean water for consumption and in washrooms. Even the people who attend the patients or visit the hospital also require clean water in the washrooms. Most importantly, the staff who cooks breakfast, lunch, and dinners for the patients in the hospital require clean water to ensure hygiene in the hospital. Also, workers who clean the laundry, bed sheets, washrooms, beds, floors, and rooms also need clean water to carry out these tasks to maintain the cleanliness of the hospital.
Clean drinking water is the basic need of every individual, whether he is the patient, doctor or worker. Better management of the clean water by the hospital prevents infections to a large extent. The availability of clean water prevents infections and also reduces diseases by reducing the spread of antimicrobials resistance.
Hence, the provision of clean water in the hospital leads to maintaining the quality of the services and to ensure the health of the patients with care. Most importantly, clean water ensures the safety of newborns in the hospital.
A Global Response
Under Sustainable Development Goal, the U.N. General Assembly has called for the provision of basic WASH services in all healthcare facilities by 2030 in recognition of the worldwide health crisis that this lack of WASH infrastructure and services in healthcare facilities has caused. However, millions of people will continue to be at risk because of dangerous WASH conditions in healthcare settings until this ambitious objective is accomplished.