Association of community sanitation usage with soil-transmitted helminth infections among school-aged children in Amhara Region, Ethiopia

17 Feb 2017
William E. Oswald, Aisha E. P. Stewart, Michael R. Kramer, Tekola Endeshaw, Mulat Zerihun, Berhanu Melak, Eshetu Sata, Demelash Gessese, Tesfaye Teferi, Zerihun Tadesse, Birhan Guadie, Jonathan D. King, Paul M. Emerson, Elizabeth K. Callahan, Matthew C. Freeman, W. Dana Flanders

Globally, in 2010, approximately 1.5 billion people were infected with at least one species of soil-transmitted helminth (STH), Ascaris lumbricoides, Trichuris trichiura, hookworm (Ancylostoma duodenale and Necator americanus). Infection occurs through ingestion or contact (hookworm) with eggs or larvae in the environment from fecal contamination. To control these infections, the World Health Organization recommends periodic mass treatment of at-risk populations with deworming drugs. Prevention of these infections typically relies on improved excreta containment and disposal. Most evidence of the relationship between sanitation and STH has focused on household-level access or usage, rather than community-level sanitation usage. We examined the association between the proportion of households in a community with latrines in use and prevalence of STH infections among school-aged children.