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Drinking water quality in Ghana: Individual and household determinants

Michael J. White, Brown University
Kofi Awusabo-Asare, University of Cape Coast
Stephen McGarvey, Brown University

Expansion of piped water systems in less developed nations has yielded less than expected health improvements. Understanding environmental and socio-demographic determinants of water quality will aid targeting of health education. We examine associations between water sources, socio-demographic characteristics and household drinking water quality in a representative sample of six coastal districts of Ghana’s Central Region. To do so we draw on individual and household-level data from a population survey conducted representative of rural, semi-urban, and urban residence strata. Drinking water samples were stored on ice and Escherichia coli were quantified using the IDEXX Colilert® system. Cross-sectional associations between E. coli/100ml H2O and water sources, sanitation and socio-demographic factors are estimated with multi-stage regression models to adjust for potential confounding. We examine the predictive association between household E. Coli readings and characteristics of both the household (urban/rural; community water source) and individual level (education, media awareness, general health knowledge).

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Presented in Poster Session 1