Incontinence- the last last taboo in WASH?


  • DaniBarrington
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Incontinence- the last last taboo in WASH?

A group of consultants, researchers and pratitioners ran a really interesting workshop on urinary and faecal incontinence needs in low and middle income countries at last week's WEDC (Water, Engineering and Development Centre) conference in Loughborough, UK. Some of us had been involved in the preparation of Taking Stock: Incompetent at incontinence – why are we ignoring the needs of incontinence sufferers? , some work on technological aspects of incontinence and other organisers and participants were newbies to the field.

If you'd like to hear more about what was discussed (and see some photos of our props!), check out these blogs on the Community Led Total Sanitation and IMPRESS Network websites.

Two researchers presented on recent work in Zambia and Pakistan, where they found incontinence was rarely discussed by sufferers and health professionals. A practitioner from Norwegian Church Aid discussed incontinence needs in emergency settings.

So we're wondering - what have your experiences been with incontinence in the countries where you work? Is it prevalent? Is it taboo? Does more work need to be done to include those suffering from incontinence in WASH programs?

N.B. if you're having trouble with the hyperlinks, they're:
Dani Barrington, PhD, BE (Hons), BSc

Lecturer in Water, Sanitation and Health
University of Leeds

Editor in Chief
Journal of Humanitarian Engineering

Honorary Fellow in Public Health
The University of Quuensland
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