Healthcare-acquired infections (HCAIs) are the most frequent adverse event compromising patient safety globally. This is particularly true in Lower- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs). Addressing the sources of HCAIs requires systematically identifying the pathways for microbial contamination and developing low-cost interventions that can be implemented sustainably in resource-constrained environments.
The Water Institute has played a leading role in assessing the availability and impacts of WASH services in HCFs. The Institute is leveraging funding from Wallace Genetic Foundation and collaborating with a consortium of partners to:
- Strengthen the evidence base to catalyze and guide WASH-related investments in HCFs;
- Advance implementation of “no-regret” solutions that improve WASH-related services and health outcomes in HCFs; and
- Advocate for reform and greater prioritization of WASH in HCFs.
Specifically, Water Institute is involved in technology validation and establishing proper monitoring, evaluation, and learning (MEL) processes with our implementing partners to ensure that we are assessing costs, evaluating impacts, and progressively improving the sustainability and cost effectiveness of these interventions.
Additionally, Water Institute is filling critical gaps in the evidence base for WASH in HCFs by:
- Exploring the drivers of infectious disease in HCFs
- Identifying opportunities for investment and meaningful improvement in environmental health service delivery
- Assessing life-cycle costs of WASH interventions in HCFs
- Refining HCF costing tool to support more sustainable budgeting and long-term planning
Finally, Water Institute is advocating for inclusion of WASH issues in HCF management by:
- Continuing to build momentum for and structure the international discourse on WASH in HCFs
- Providing scientific leadership and direction in developing a global research agenda to improve environmental health within HCFs
- Providing evidence-based recommendations to decisionmakers
- Leading the WASH sector’s approach to HCFs, including through convening working groups, engaging with donors, and generating and disseminating evidence