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Impact of cyclone Amphan on the water, sanitation, hygiene, and health (WASH2) facilities of coastal Bangladesh

The vulnerability of the underfunded water, sanitation, hygiene, and health (WASH2) facilities, particularly in the developing nations, is exacerbated by natural disasters. This study assessed the impacts of Amphan on the WASH2 facilities of the affected coastal areas of Bangladesh via a structured questionnaire survey, key informant interviews, and direct observation. The study reported that Amphan destroyed WASH2 facilities, where only 20% of the respondents were receiving WASH2 services afterwards. Many respondents had to rely on unsafe water sources after the cyclone hit. While the respondents used different kinds of water treatment methods, three- quarters of the respondents reported issues related to odor, taste, color, and/or others. The majority had to practice open defecation due to damage done to sanitation facilities. Amphan has also resulted in an onslaught of several WASH2 diseases in the study area, primarily skin disease and diarrhea. The study has exhibited how intense natural disasters can completely render WASH2 facilities useless, causing the communities affected to switch to unsafe practices to meet their needs. The affected communities are in urgent need of adequate and sustainable WASH2 facilities.

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