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In the News…
Public Health and Drinking Water News Briefs

February 22, 2008

Golodner Profiled for Work on the Healthy Pools Program

Aquatics International recently announced that Water Quality & Health Council member Linda Golodner was named to their annual "Power 25." Golodner is president emeritus of the National Consumers League (NCL).

Under Golodner's leadership, NCL became actively involved in promoting healthy swimming. To help educate consumers, NCL and the Water Quality & Health Council presented the Healthy Pools campaign, a 2007 blitz that included information on a number of pool health issues such as proper maintenance and good personal hygiene. The cornerstone of the campaign was "Sense"-able Swimming, a set of simple water quality check tips for the public based on the five senses . For instance, sight (the painted stripes and the drain on the pool bottom should appear crisp and clear) and smell (chlorine is essential to a healthy pool, but a heavy chemical odor signals a problem).

In addition, Golodner led NCL to become a strong supporter the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Healthy Swimming campaign. This ongoing CDC campaign focuses on educating the public about recreational water illnesses.

For more information, please visit:
Linda Golodner Profile

Sale of Water Purifying Packets in U.S. to Support International Relief

Proctor & Gamble, in partnership with the Canadian firm Reliance Products, recently launched its water-purifying packets in the United States. The packets are currently used in developing countries and in international disasters.

P&G expects the PuR purifying packets to be used by campers, hikers and other outdoor recreation enthusiasts and in emergency preparedness . The packets use some of the same treatment chemicals used in municipal water systems, including a coagulant and chlorine-based disinfectant, to remove dirt, cysts and pollutants, and kills bacteria and viruses in contaminated water.

The profits from sales will be used to continue to support efforts to provide the packets in developing countries . Governments and relief agencies helped distribute PuR packets during the Southeast Asia tsunami, the Pakistan and Indonesian earthquakes, and floods in India, Bangladesh, Haiti, Kenya, and Ethiopia. P&G last summer decided to obtain approval by U.S. regulators to offer the PuR packets in the United States in the wake of Hurricane Katrina's 2005 Gulf Coast devastation, when some aid agencies inquired about using PuR there.

For more information, please visit:
P&G PuR Packet

Congo's Southeastern Cholera Epidemic Grow

Aid workers in the Democratic Republic of Congo are expressing concern that a cholera epidemic in the southeastern province of Katanga, is getting worse, despite renewed efforts and attention to the problem. Since the first of the year, approximately 100 people have died and an additional 3,000 people have been stricken with the disease, according to the Health Ministry and World Health Organization.

Treatment centers set up by the Belgian chapter of medical charity Doctors Without Borders have treated 2,784 patients to date.

Cholera is a gastro-intestinal disease typically spread by drinking contaminated water and can cause severe diarrhea which, in extreme cases, can lead to fatal dehydration. It can be prevented by treating drinking water with chlorine and by improving hygiene conditions.

For more about cholera, please go to:
WHO on Cholera

EPA Helps Communities Increase Water System Sustainability

Two new documents demonstrate how the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is helping communities improve the sustainability of their water systems.

The " National Capacity Development Strategic Plan " describes how EPA, state drinking water programs, drinking water system owners and operators, and technical assistance providers will work together to achieve the objectives and anticipated outcomes of the national capacity development program. The strategy outlines how EPA and its partners will promote proactive (BKB: overused) communication and outreach to help ensure that water systems have the capacity to demonstrate long-term sustainability. Funding made available through the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) program can be critical in advancing capacity development programs at the state level.

The second document EPA's " Analysis on the Use of Drinking Water State Revolving Fund Set-Asides: Promoting Capacity Development " provides information on how states have used their funds and will help state drinking water personnel, drinking water system owners and operators, and technical assistance providers to better understand how the DWSRF can support supporting capacity development programs and EPA's sustainable infrastructure initiative.

EPA works with a number of partners, including organizations that provide technical assistance to small public water systems, to improve technical, managerial, and financial capacity of systems.

For more information, please visit:
EPA Addresses Water Sustainability



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