Bangladesh: Bridging the gap between emergency and development efforts through leadership and collaboration
An authoritative and empowered National Technical Committee (led by the Directorate of Health with four ministries and multiple partners taking part, including WHO, UNICEF and WaterAid), meets on a quarterly basis and is mandated to provide governance oversight. Establishment of the committee sparked the development and subsequent implementation of a National Strategy for WASH in HCF (2019–2023) (5). The strategy provides an important bridge between development and emergency efforts, leading to more targeted, coordinated action and funding. It articulates a pathway that will enable all health care facilities in Bangladesh to deliver standardized IPC services and bring about a new era of quality health care. Over 100 community clinics in climate-related disaster-prone areas of southwest Bangladesh have been renovated with support from partners according to a newly developed set of WASH guidelines for community clinics. Finally, the collaboration of emergency and development sectors has been instrumental in the national roll-out of WASH FIT. First piloted in Cox’s Bazar, it has led to assessment and improvements in 184 health care facilities with a further 104 health care workers trained in and around the Rohingya refugee camps.