Published on: 19/07/2022
"Zero health facilities without effective water, sanitation and hygiene systems in sub-Saharan Africa by 2025, that is the vision I would like to share with you"
- Madame Sika Kaboré, First Lady of Burkina Faso at the Panafrican Summit for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in Health Facilities, 23 April 2021.
It is hoped that by mid-2022, Burkina Faso will be one of the first countries in West Africa to have a clear and robust government plan to ensure adequate WASH services in all health care facilities within the framework of SDGs.
Currently, a quarter of all health care facilities in the country lack safe drinking water services and more than 11% don't have access to a toilet. Even those facilities that have toilets are not maintaining them properly.
On 23 April 2021, the First Lady of Burkina Faso, Madame Sika Kaboré, and the Minister of Health, Professor Charlemagne Ouédraogo, took part in the Regional Summit of African Leaders on WASH in Health Facilities organised by WHO and UNICEF.
"I call for urgent action, not only to address the severe lack of WASH in health facilities in response to the global pandemic, but also to address the massive challenges faced daily by the communities and to permanently eradicate water, sanitation and hygiene problems at all levels." -Madame Sika Kaboré said in this meeting.
This high level commitment led to an initiative by the Minister of Health to develop a costed strategy for WASH in health care facilities. This strategy will guide authorities to invest in strengthening governance and management systems for WASH services.
The Minister of Health called on IRC to provide technical assistance in identifying the most effective solutions, and the work started in October 2021.
However, political instability and the limited capacity of the national authorities to mobilise the new partners and resources needed to implement this strategy efficiently, remain major challenges to achieving this goal.