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What about wastewater treatment? What are possible effective treatment processes and how effective are they in removing viruses in general and Ebola specifically?


1 Answer

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Margaret Montgomery
Ebola WASH TG
KnowledgePointAdmin
RedR CCDRR

There is no evidence to date that Ebola has been transmitted via sewerage systems, with or without wastewater treatment. As part of an integrated public health policy, wastewater carried in sewerage systems should ideally be treated in well-designed and well-managed centralised wastewater treatment works. Each stage of treatment (as well as retention time and dilution) results in further reduction of potential risk. Waste stabilisation ponds (oxidation ponds or lagoons) are generally considered to be a wastewater treatment technology that is particularly well-suited to the destruction of pathogens as relatively long retention times (20 days or more) combined with sunlight, elevated pH levels and other factors serve to accelerate pathogen destruction.

Source: WHO & UNICEF (Reviewed by MSF, CDC, and Tufts 2014) Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) Key questions and answers concerning water, sanitation and hygiene