Intermittent slow sand filtration for preventing diarrhoea among children in Kenyan households using unimproved water sources: randomized controlled trial

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Children in households with a BSF had 54% less diarrhoea than in control households.
TitleIntermittent slow sand filtration for preventing diarrhoea among children in Kenyan households using unimproved water sources: randomized controlled trial
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsTiwari, S-SK, Schmidt, W-P, Darby, J, Kariuki, ZG, Jenkins, MW
JournalTropical Medicine & International Health
Volume14
Issue11
Pagination1374 - 1382
Date Published11/2009
ISSN13602276
Keywordsbiosand filter, child diarrhoea, household drinking water quality, Kenya, point-of-use water treatment, randomized controlled trial
Abstractobjective Measure effectiveness of intermittent slow sand filtration for reducing child diarrhoea
among households using unimproved water sources in rural Kenya.
methods A randomized controlled trail was conducted among populations meeting a high-risk profile
for child diarrhoea from drinking river water in the River Njoro watershed. Intervention households (30)
were provided the concrete BioSand Filter and instructed on filter use and maintenance. Control
households (29) continued normal practices. Longitudinal monthly monitoring of diarrhoea (seven-day
daily prevalence recall) and of influent, effluent, and drinking water quality for fecal coliform was
conducted for 6 months.
results Intervention households had better drinking water quality than control households (fecal
coliform geometric mean, 30.0 CFU vs. 89.0 CFU⁄ 100 ml, P < 0.001) and reported significantly fewer
diarrhoea days (86 days over 626 child-weeks) compared to controls (203 days over 558 child-weeks)
among children up to 15 (age-adjusted RR 0.46; 95 % CI = 0.22, 0.96). Greater child diarrhoea
reduction due to the intervention (age-adjusted RR 0.23, 95%CI = 0.10, 0.51) was observed among the
sub-group using unimproved water sources all of the time.
conclusion Intermittent slow sand filtration, a non-commercial technology, produces similar
observed effects on child diarrhoea as commercial POU products, adding to the range of effective options
for poor populations (chlorination, ceramic filtration, solar disinfection, flocculation ⁄ disinfection).
DOI10.1111/tmi.2009.14.issue-1110.1111/j.1365-3156.2009.02381.x

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