BINDOY, Negros Oriental (PIA) – The Provincial Integrated Health Office (IPHO) together with the municipal government of Bindoy, has recently launched the ‘Zero Open Defecation (ZOD)’ campaign to educate residents of said town on the dangers posed by open defecation to human health and safety.
Bindoy Mayor Valente Yap disclosed 51% of households in the town have no comfort rooms and practice open defecation.
The negative effect of this is the proliferation of unhygienic-related diseases like diarrhea.
Mayor Yap added that open defecation poses a threat to human safety, especially those who live in far-flung barangays.
He explained that those living in remote areas with no comfort room are forced to go out in their house in the middle of the night when they feel the urge to defecate, making them vulnerable to snake bites or other dangers.
Aside from this, problems on cleanliness in communities and food and water contamination are reported because of open defecation.
Mayor Yap said there should be changes in human behavior and this will happen if people are informed on the hazards of this practice as well as the countermeasures to deter it.
The ZOD campaign aims to promote safety, comfort, proper health and sanitation to the residents of Bindoy by having proper lavatories, through series of barangay trainings conducted by representatives from the Rural Health Unit (RHU).
On the other hand, the municipal government assures residents it will counterpart with them in the establishment of comfort rooms in their homes provided there already a structure of the lavatory.
The local government is ready to provide toilets to households.
ZOD campaign is an initiative under World Bank’s Water and Sanitation Program.
Dr. Edgardo Barredo, Assistant Health Officer of IPHO, said the municipality of Bindoy and the La Libertad are the pilot areas for the implementation of ZOD in Negros Oriental.
Its primary aim is to eradicate the prevalence of diarrhea in the province.
“The province has many cases of diarrhea. In 2012, there were 12, 000 cases recorded (in the province) and it is the third leading cause of morbidity (here),” Dr. Barredo elaborated.
Meanwhile, the local government of Bindoy also has plans to implement the search for the ZOD barangay that will identify which barangay has successfully carried out the ZOD campaign.
The local government will be giving incentives to the barangay that will be declared ZOD, a move seen as an opportunity to achieve their goal of making Bindoy ZOD by 2016. (rmn/ral/PIA7-NegOr/Article originally published at PIA Website on Oct. 213, 2014