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Increasing awareness reduces waterborne diseases in rural areas

By Mamun Islam

RANGPUR, June 19, 2017 (BSS) - Successful implementation of various awareness building programmes of the government continues increasing public awareness and reducing extent of waterborne diseases in rural areas of Rangpur region.

"The awareness building activities have helped rural people to achieve success in health, hygiene, sanitation, nutrition and safe drinking water to reduce waterborne diseases," said Director of Rangpur Medical College Hospital (RMCH) Dr Moudud Hossain Rabu.

"As a result of increasing public awareness about waterborne diseases at the grassroots levels, the infant, child and maternal mortality rates have also reduced to the minimum everywhere in Rangpur region," he added.

According to Civil Surgeon Dr Abu Md Zakirul Islam, recurrence of waterborne diseases like diarrhoea, cholera, dysentery, hookworm, ringworm and others among the people of all ages has been reduced to the minimum.

"The government and non-government health officials and workers, Union Health Sub-Centres and Community Clinics have been playing vital roles along with the efforts of different other government organisations," he added.

Talking to BSS, Rangpur Sadar Upazila Chairman Nasima Zaman Boby said the common people are now aware about health, hygiene, sanitation, personal hygiene, safe drinking water and they do not use the open places as toilets as it was in the pasts.

"Despite disappearance of diarrhoea, few incidents of waterborne diseases are still being noticed following consumption of rotten, old and unhygienic foodstuffs from a section of roadside hotels and restaurants," Boby added.

Community Medicine Specialist Dr Fazlul Haque at Rangpur Medical College said only few food poisoning related diarrhoea patients came to his chamber at Keranipara Mour in the city in recent years though their number was higher a decade ago.

Chairman of Rangpur-based North Bengal Institute of Development Studies Dr Syed Samsuzzaman said number of waterborne disease-related child and maternal deaths substantially reduced in Rangpur region where the number was high in the past.

"The exceptional success has been achieved following the hectic government and NGO efforts being conducted in motivating the rural people for better life with help of field level health workers and local community leaders," he added.

Divisional Director (Health) Dr Mozammel Hossain said the Community Clinics are playing vital role to reduce waterborne diseases improving health and hygienic indexes of rural people in the region to achieve the sustainable development goals.