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Home » DHS-8 Questionnaire Review - Archived » Core questionnaire: Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene » Measuring open defecation in India
Measuring open defecation in India [message #16758] Wed, 27 February 2019 14:56
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Registered: February 2019
We request the following indicator to be incorporated into India's DHS: Fraction of people defecating in the open.

Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 aims to ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all by 2030. This will involve eliminating open defecation. The WHO-Unicef Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply, Sanitation, and Hygiene (JMP) estimates that rural India is home to more than half of the world's open defecation, so progress towards eliminating open defecation in India will be essential to meeting the SDGs. Because many rural Indians defecate in the open despite having a functional latrine, India's DHS, which asks about the defecation behavior of everyone in the household all in one question, substantially underestimates open defecation in India. A new study, attached to this submission, finds that measuring open defecation at the individual level is feasible in a large household survey like the DHS, and more accurately estimates open defecation in India. The DHS provides essential insight on progress towards the SDGs, and is an important source of indicators for the JMP.
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