Online Program

Using a community-based participatory approach to build sustainable water and sanitation infrastructure to improve health status of northern laotians

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 : 10:45 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Arti Desai, MPH, PhD(s), Department of Global Health School of Public Health, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA
Ryan Gene Gaia Sinclair, PhD, MPH, Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, Loma Linda University School of Public Health, Loma Linda, CA
D. Scott Rawson, BS, Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA Lao PDR), Vientiane, Laos
Thelma Gamboa, DrPH, School of Public Health, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA
Illness and poverty in Laos are directly related to lack of access to clean water access and poor sanitation practices. Water, Sanitation, Hygiene (WaSH) for Health is a health promotion program created for rural populations which addresses health and hygiene problems related to water and sanitation. WaSH's goal is to improve the health of families, coupled with positive health behavior changes through regular health promotion, evaluation, community contribution and ownership. A needs and assets assessment was conducted in the Oudomxay Province in northern Laos to understand the health determinants underlying the poor health of local villagers. A qualitative community-based approach was then used to study eight villages. Key informant interviews with village chiefs (n= 8) and focus groups with villagers (n= 371) were conducted. Villagers were also asked to create community maps to identify health centers, water sources, toilets, and schools. A prioritization chart was used to reduce each village's concerns to the top three. The focus group questions concentrated on sources of income, health practices, water collection methods, latrine facilities, and village expectations. Data analyzed using grounded theory resulted in emerging themes. Northern Laotians identified and prioritized 1) clean water, 2) latrines, and 3) fully functional health centers as their top three needs. Baseline results are presently being used to plan and create a culturally appropriate health intervention and to mobilize the community and local health agencies to build sustainable infrastructure to support proper sanitation.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Diversity and culture
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the importance of utilizing community members in gathering culturally appropriate information in order to form the best possible intervention. Explain the importance of using a community-based participatory approach in gathering appropriate community identified issues in Northern Laos. List three tools used to gather culturally appropriate information in order to form the best possible intervention that is also sustainable.

Keyword(s): Community-Based Partnership, International Public Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the principal investigator and author on this project.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

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