Humanitarian Health Action

Informal inter-agency meeting linking Health to Water and Sanitation in Crises

29 October 2004 , WHO-Geneva

On 29 October 2004, the World Health Organization called an interagency meeting in Geneva on health, water and sanitation in crisis settings1. The objectives were to take stock, from a field perspective, of the impact of water and sanitation system failures on health, to consider practical solutions to address these failures and to determine what networks and mechanisms can be used for follow-up.

The meeting brought together the expertise of a core group of UN and NGO partners. Besides WHO, the organizations represented included: UNICEF, UNHCR, MSF Switzerland, IFRC, ICRC, International Rescue Committee, Oxfam and CERFE. The meeting was chaired by Dr Nevio Zagaria, Coordinator, Strategy Development and Monitoring for Eradication and Elimination, Communicable Diseases Control, Prevention and Eradication. Dr David Nabarro, Representative of the WHO Director-General for Health Action in Crises, pronounced the Keynote address.

Consensus was reached on opportunities, best forms and practices of cooperation for joint operational response and capacity-building in countries in crisis.