Dr. Sebastian Sandaare, Lawra District Director of Health Services, has called on parents and teachers to instill in children the habit of cleanliness and proper environmental sanitation practices.
He said the poor environmental health practices could only be addressed in future if children were well educated on how to manage the waste they generated.
Dr. Sandaare made the call on Saturday at Lawra after a cleanup exercise organised by the Lawra District Hospital in collaboration with the District Environmental Health Department.
Dr. Sandaare who is also the Medical Superintendent of the hospital, noted that the focus of the hospital would now be on regenerative health activities to ensure a healthy environment devoid of poor sanitation related diseases.
He noted that the current filthy environment prevailing in the district was a manifestation of the lack of knowledge on proper environmental sanitation practices.
He stated that though the purpose of the exercise was to clean the environment, it was also intended to demonstrate to the people the need to keep their surroundings neat by cleaning it constantly.
He mentioned malaria, diarrhoea and acute respiratory diseases as some of the top killers of children under five, adding that these diseases flourish where there is filth.
Dr. Sandaare noted that the 19 per cent of children who suffered from malnutrition was not only caused by the lack of food but also as a result of poor sanitation.
He said resources government spends on the treatment of preventable diseases such as malaria and others could have been used to improve on other sectors of the economy.
The District Director of Health Services therefore appealed to the District Assembly and all stakeholders to support the Environmental Health Department with the necessary equipment to improve on the sanitation situation in the district.
Mr. Kofi Kpokpori, an Environmental Health Officer, said the sub-district offices was short of staff as it needs about six more officers in addition to the current five in the district.
He also complained about the lack of equipment and transport, noting that the district currently depend on only three motor bikes as the only means of transport to carry out their activities.