Category Archives: Waterborne Disease

COVID-19 not detected in drinking water

“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that COVID-19 has not been detected in drinking water. Conventional water treatment methods of filtration and disinfection — which are in most municipal drinking water systems — should remove or inactivate the virus causing COVID-19.” click here

Spread of Malaria not related to climate variability, Bangladesh

Haque U, Hashizume M, Glass GE, Dewan AM, Overgaard HJ, Yamamoto T (2010) The Role of Climate Variability in the Spread of Malaria in Bangladeshi Highlands. PLoS ONE 5(12): e14341.

” Background
Malaria is a major public health problem in Bangladesh, frequently occurring as epidemics since the 1990s. Many factors affect increases in malaria cases, including changes in land use, drug resistance, malaria control programs, socioeconomic issues, and climatic factors. No study has examined the relationship between malaria epidemics and climatic factors in Bangladesh. Here, we investigate the relationship between climatic parameters [rainfall, temperature, humidity, sea surface temperature (SST), El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI)], and malaria cases over the last 20 years in the malaria endemic district of Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT).

Methods and Principal Findings
Monthly malaria case data from January 1989 to December 2008, monthly rainfall, temperature, humidity sea surface temperature in the Bay of Bengal and ENSO index at the Niño Region 3 (NIÑO3) were used. A generalized linear negative binomial regression model was developed using the number of monthly malaria cases and each of the climatic parameters. After adjusting for potential mutual confounding between climatic factors there was no evidence for any association between the number of malaria cases and temperature, rainfall and humidity. Only a low NDVI was associated with an increase in the number of malaria cases. There was no evidence of an association between malaria cases and SST in the Bay of Bengal and NIÑO3.

Conclusion and Significance
It seems counterintuitive that a low NDVI, an indicator of low vegetation greenness, is associated with increases in malaria cases, since the primary vectors in Bangladesh, such as An. dirus, are associated with forests. This relationship can be explained by the drying up of rivers and streams creating suitable breeding sites for the vector fauna. Bangladesh has very high vector species diversity and vectors suited to these habitats may be responsible for the observed results.”

CDC Guidance issued for 2019-nCoV

Excerpt from the CDC 2019-nCoV Situation Summary (here):

CDC Recommends

While the immediate risk of this new virus to the American public is believed to be low at this time, everyone can do their part to help us respond to this emerging public health threat:

Childhood diarrhea in West Gojjam, Northwest Ethiopia

Girma M, Gobena T, Medhin G, Gasana J, Roba KT. Determinants of childhood diarrhea in West Gojjam, Northwest Ethiopia: a case control study. The Pan African medical journal. 2018 Jul 27;30:234. doi: 10.11604/pamj.2018.30.234.14109.

INTRODUCTION: Childhood diarrhea is a global public health problem that affects both developed and developing countries including Ethiopia. The objective of this study was to assess determinants of childhood diarrhea among children under-five years of age in West Gojjam Zone, northwest Ethiopia.

METHODS: A community-based case control study was conducted in four districts of West Gojjam in the northwest of Ethiopia from July to August, 2015. A randomly selected sample of 118 cases and 351 controls who met the inclusion criteria were included in this study. Data were collected using a structured questionnaire through face to face interview. Independent variables which had p-value less than 0.2 at an unadjusted model were candidate for the final model. Adjusted odds ratio was used to control confounding effects and to determine predictors of an outcome.

RESULTS: Unimproved water sources (AOR, 1.88; 95 % CI: 1.17-3.03), lack of hand washing at critical times (AOR, 2.38; 95 % CI: 1.42-3.99) and a deepening method to take water from a water storage container (AOR, 2.11; 95 % CI: 1.28-3.47), presence of two or more young siblings (AOR, 4.15; 95 % CI: 2.57-6.70), rural residence (AOR,2.11 95 % CI: 2.21-3.68), and not using latrine for disposal of child feces (AOR, 1.90; 95 % CI: 1.12-3.22) were predictors of diarrhea among children under the age of five.

CONCLUSION: The majority of the causes of childhood diarrhea in the study area were preventable. Thus, health extension workers should give tailored health information to mothers or caregivers on the importance of sanitation, personal and environmental hygiene and drinking water handling methods.

Bacterial contamination of drinking water, Guadalajara, Mexico

Rubino F, Corona Y, Pérez JGJ, Smith C. Bacterial Contamination of Drinking Water in Guadalajara, Mexico. International journal of environmental research and public health.  2018 Dec 27;16(1). pii: E67. doi: 10.3390/ijerph16010067.

In many regions where drinking water supply is intermittent and unreliable, households adapt by storing water in cisterns or rooftop tanks. Both intermittent supply and stored water can be vulnerable to contamination by microorganisms with deleterious health effects. The Metropolitan Zone of Guadalajara is a rapidly growing urban center with over five million residents where household storage is nearly ubiquitous. This pilot study was conducted in July 2018 to examine the microbiological quality of drinking water in Guadalajara. Samples were tested for free available chlorine residual, total coliform bacteria, and Escherichia coli. A survey on access to water and public perspectives was also conducted. Water exiting rooftop tanks exceeded regulatory limits for total coliform levels in half of the homes studied. Piped water arriving at two homes had total coliform levels that far exceeded regulatory limits. No E. coli were detected in any of the samples. Only 35% of homes had a chlorine residual between the recommended 0.2 and 1.5 mg/L. Many homes reported unpleasant odors and colors. Only 7% of residents drank the piped water. Future studies are needed, especially during April and May when many homes reported a higher disruption to water service.

Bacterial contamination of drinking water and health, Egypt

Ouf SA, Yehia RS, Ouf AS, Abdul-Rahim RF. Bacterial contamination and health risks of drinking water from the municipal non-government managed water treatment plants. Environmental monitoring and assessment. 2018 Oct 29;190(11):685. doi: 10.1007/s10661-018-7054-z.

Water quality and bacterial contamination from 18 drinking water municipal plants in three locations at Giza governorate were investigated. The average total count of bacteria detected after four stages of treatments in the investigated plants was 32 CFU/1 mL compared to 2330 cfu/mL for raw water, with a reduction percentage of 98.6. Although there is a relatively high removal percent of bacterial contamination from the water sources, however, several bacterial pathogens were identified in the produced water prepared for drinking including Enterococcus faecalis, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Shigella spp. After 3 days of water incubation at 30 °C, the amount of bacterial endotoxins ranged from 77 to 137 ng/mL in the water produced from the municipal plants compared to 621-1260 ng/mL for untreated water. The main diseases reported from patients attending different clinics and hospitals during summer 2014 at the surveyed locations and assuredly due to drinking water from these plants indicated that diarrheas and gastroenteritis due to E. coli and Campylobacter jejuni constituted 65.7% of the total patients followed by bacillary dysentery or shigellosis due to Shigella spp. (7.9%) and cholera due to Vibrio cholera (7.2%). There was an increase in serum aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) as well as urea and creatinine values of guinea pigs consuming water produced from the non-governmental plants for 6 months indicating remarkable liver and kidney damages. Histological sections of liver and kidney from the tested animal revealed liver having ballooning degeneration of hepatocytes and distortion and fragmentation of the nuclei, while the section of the kidney showed irregularly distributed wrinkled cells, degenerated Bowman’s capsule, congested blood vessels, and inflammatory cells.

Opportunities to reduce global cholera

Legros D; Partners of the Global Task Force on Cholera Control. Global Cholera Epidemiology: Opportunities to Reduce the Burden of Cholera by 2030. The Journal of infectious diseases. 2018 Sep 1. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiy486.

While safe drinking water and advanced sanitation systems have made the Global North cholera-free for decades, the disease still affects 47 countries across the globe resulting in an estimated 2.86 million cases and 95,000 deaths per year worldwide. Cholera impacts communities already burdened by conflict, lack of infrastructure, poor health systems, and malnutrition. In October 2017, the Global Task Force on Cholera Control (GTFCC) launched an initiative titled Ending Cholera: A Global Roadmap to 2030, with the objective to reduce cholera deaths by 90% worldwide, and eliminate cholera in at least 20 countries by 2030. The GTFCC is working to position cholera control not as a vertical programme but instead using cholera as a marker of inequity and an indicator of poverty, linking the objectives of the Roadmap to the SDGs. The roadmap consists of targeted multi-sectoral interventions, supported by a coordination mechanism, along 3 axes: (1) early detection and quick response to contain outbreaks; (2) a multisectoral approach to prevent cholera recurrence in hotspots; (3) an effective partnership mechanism of coordination for technical support, countries capacity building, research and M&E, advocacy and resource mobilization. Every case and every death from cholera is preventable with the tools we have today.