Assessment of factors influencing access to safe water in Bugaaki Sub-county Kyenjojo district
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Introduction: Water borne diseases are still common among people in Uganda. One of the reasons for the occurrence of these diseases is that majority of the people lack access to safe water which is crucial in maintaining their health. Some of the common water-borne diseases that affect the communities in Uganda include diarrhea, typhoid and dysentery among others.Objective: To assess factors influencing access to safe water in Bugaaki sub county Kyenjojo district so as to provide information that could be used to put in place measures to increase access so as to reduce the risk of water-borneinfections. Methods: This was a cross sectional study, employing both quantitative and qualitative data collection methods. Quantitatively, the study used a structured questionnaire among community members whereas qualitatively, 4 key informant interviews were conducted. A sample size of 173 community members responded to the questionnaire, and the key informants involved included health inspector, LC chairperson, health assistant and borehole caretaker. Uni variate analysis was done to analyze quantitative data while qualitative data was analyzed manually using thematic analysis.Results: In this study,most 42.2% (73/173) of the community members use open wells as the main water source and 41% (71/173) are more than 500 meters away from the water source. Majority 80.4 % (139/173) have ever suffered from diseases transmitted as a result of using unsafe water and 97.1% (168/173) agreed that it is important to boil drinking water. The majority 65.9% (114/173) who collect, transport and store water are children, and all of them 100% (173/173) use jerrycans to collect water.Conclusion: Access to safe water in Bugaaki sub county is commendable to some extent as some exhibited good knowledge on the importance of maintaining water safe and therefore carried out measures aimed at promoting water safety. However, other community members were not aware of its importance and did not practice any method of keeping water safe hence ended up with diarrheal infections. The sub county authority should therefore increase efforts such as through increased sensitization to ensure that all community members are aware that maintaining water safe is of a great importance as far as their health is concerned.