The water and sanitation project
Background: One of the biggest problems facing Hossana hospital has been the
lack of water in the main hospital block. When the four-storey ward and theatre block was built back in 1984, no header supply tank was installed at the top of the building. The town supply was poor, and the ground level reservoir tank in the hospital grounds was often not able to be filled. The pump from the ground level reservoir kept on breaking. So although there were taps and sinks on the wards, most gave no water, and those few that did only provided an intermittent trickle. Although there are toilets in the ward block, there was no water to flush them. As a result, water had to be carried in from a standpipe in the grounds, and was available from there for an hour each day.
Si it has been a hospital without water. But in 2009-10, the World Bank
funded the construction of a completely new water supply to the town,
including a much improved delivery of water to the hospital compound. This gave the opportunity to do something about the lack of water and sanitation in the hospital.
Over a three year period, Ethiopia Link worked with WaterAid in Ethiopia,
local engineers in Hossana, and water engineers in the UK to pull together a plan
to sort out an effective water supply to the hospital and repair the blocked and
broken sewage system. It was decided that the only way to ensure a sustainable
supply of water was to construct a very substantial four storey 50 cubic metre capacity water tower, complete with a new and powerful pump, and to connect it to the hospital system. In addition the system would need plumbing in properly, as the taps, sink drains
and shower heads throughout the hospital were broken or missing.
Ethiopia Link pledged £36,000 towards this major project. With funds donated by staff
in Glan Clwyd and HM Stanley hospitals, supplemented by local Rotary Groups,
Inner Wheel, churches and other organisations, work started in 2011, and was completed in 2013. The local Hadiya zonal health bureau provided £19,000 to complete the
The water tower now allows 24 hour provision of water to the wards, theatres and
the staff residences, something that has not been possible since
the hospital was built in 1984. Until now, water was carried in from a standpipe
in the grounds, and was available for an hour each day.
The renewal and unblocking of the sewage system, and the emptying of solidified
septic tanks and filter beds allows toilets, sinks and drains in the
hospital block to be used, and avoid flooding of the ground floor with sewage
during the rainy season.
Further funding was supplied to run a new pipe from the reservoir to the staff residences, and Dafydd Jones, a plumber from Ruthin, accompanied staff from Glan Clwyd on the visit in 2013. During this visit, he worked with the local hospital maintenance staff and put a working tap in each ward, and shower heads on each floor.
In 2015, the Ethiopian Government Ministry of Health supplied further funds to continue work on the water supply and toilets in the main hospital block, as part of an extensive renovation programme for the hospital.
Ethiopia Link provided majority funding for two new latrine blocks in 2014-15, as it was necessary for patients and staff to have such a facility off the ward block. Further details in the infrastructure section.