Lack of sanitation and safe water has been a long pending, serious issue that has resulted in serious consequences like epidemics and polluted water bodies. Although a widely known issue that receives support from various organizations, NGOs, and governments, it is still far from solved.
Out of 7.3 billion people in the world today, almost 2.3 billion people don't have access to basic sanitation. 892 million people still know no alternative but to defecate in the open.
Sanitation and safe drinking water are basic human rights. They are also basic facilities required for improving public health.
Without a suitable sanitation system, the transmission of diseases are recorded to be more rapid. Records show that poor sanitation kills one child every 20 seconds. All this has fetched this issue a place in the global development priority and is now sustainable development goal 6 which says, 'Ensure available and sustainable management of water and sanitation'.
The emergence of new technologies is giving hope for redressal of such global issues. The Internet of Things (IoT) especially stresses on improving public health by remodeling the sanitation system. Here’s how IoT actually creates an impact in improving public health across the world:
IoT is still in its early stage with research and development, although it is making progress with new innovations and achievements. It is an accepted fact that it offers scores of applications in different problem areas.
Digitizing Sanitation and Safe drinking water helps in setting up a central authority for monitoring. This aids in putting out fixes and enhancing the sanitation system remotely. Digitization can also aid in educating and growing awareness among people in rural areas on toilet health.
Internet of Things is enabled with sensors that connect with mobile devices. ’Auto-flush’ sensors are installed in toilets that help in ensuring that the stalls are kept clean before and after each use. By the same token, IoT sensors trace every detail of malfunctioning and usage. Thereafter, a dashboard receives real-time updates which help in remote monitoring.
Technologies like the Internet of Things also power up portable toilets. The immense growth of smartphones and mobile apps help in accessing the data of toilet usage from any part of the world. Additionally, IoT can check if water bodies are safe as well as help in limiting wastage of water.
It is evident that advanced technologies can leverage basic sanitation facilities from urban to rural areas. Features like remote monitoring, notifications, portable toilets, tracking data, analytics, and much more are now possible through these technologies.