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[afro-nets] Diarrhoeal Disease Call to Action

  • From: "Claudio Schuftan" <cschuftan@phmovement.org>
  • Date: Sun, 26 Apr 2009 16:30:38 +0700

From: Nand Wadhwani - Health Education to Villages <nand@hetv.org>

As you know, diarrhoeal disease still takes the lives of more young children around the world than nearly any other illness. But today, we can change that situation.

With more resources and effective implementation of available health, water and sanitation solutions, we can save millions of children right now. That diarrhoea remains a leading cause of death among children around the world exemplifies the urgency of reinvigorating efforts to improve child health and human development.

*Call to Action*:

- To demonstrate a unified show of support for aggressively meeting the challenge diarrhoeal disease presents today
- Support from the health, water and sanitation, and environmental sectors will take a coordinated and cross-sectoral effort across these disciplines

This important initiative will be announced on 12th May, 2009. I would like to invite you to be a part of these activities by sharing the call to action widely with your audiences, by posting it on your website, including it in your newsletter, or leveraging it to further your own advocacy efforts. You can lend your voice by urging donors, international health policymakers, national leaders, and the private sector to commit resource and political will to reduce deaths and illness from diarrhoeal disease.

Find out more: http://www.eddcontrol.org/call-to-action.php


*Call to Action on Diarrheal Disease*

Over the last three decades, the global community has shown that it has the tools to dramatically reduce childhood death and illness from preventable and treatable diseases, such as diarrhea. During that time, for example, millions of children’s lives have been saved by protecting them against diarrheal disease and its consequences through proven and affordable solutions.

Yet diarrheal disease still unnecessarily takes the lives of over 4,000 children daily, despite the fact that we hold in our hands more cost-effective and proven solutions for preventing and treating diarrhea than any other childhood illness. By increased and effective allocation of resources in a portfolio of improved treatment, nutrition, and water and sanitation interventions, we can help ensure that this common disease is no longer a leading killer of children in low-income countries.

We ask our leaders to consider the burden that diarrheal disease imposes on billions around the world and within their own countries, and to recognize that our investment in deploying solutions must be commensurate with the toll that diarrhea takes. To that end, we call upon donors, international health policymakers, national leaders, and the private sector to:

- Invest the resources to ensure that funding for diarrheal disease, including both prevention and treatment interventions, is commensurate with the scope of the burden the illness places on families and communities around the world.

Redouble commitment to reducing the child mortality by 2015 as stated in the WHO/UNICEF joint statement on the Millennium Development Goals, focusing on diarrheal disease as a strategy for clear and rapid progress towards that goal.

Invest in the research and development of new effective, appropriate and affordable prevention and treatment options for diarrheal disease

- Prioritize the implementation of an appropriate combination of diarrhea interventions, including improved water, hygiene and sanitation; optimal infant and young child feeding; increased access to and uptake of vitamin A, ORS and zinc and rotavirus vaccination.

- Include diarrhea prevention and control in international, regional and country plans on sanitation, water and hygiene. Conversely, include sanitation, water and hygiene interventions in health efforts, and commit to strengthening health systems capacity to address the environmental determinants of diarrheal disease.

Ravi Narayan