Renal Health, Groundwater Contamination, and Water Policy in Sri Lanka

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2022-04-17

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Abstract

Chronic Kidney Disease of unknown (or uncertain) etiology (CKDu) is of increasing prevalence in Sri Lanka. The disease predominantly affects low-income, male agricultural workers, many of whom live in the country’s Northern Central Province and rely on groundwater for drinking water. This project took samples from wells from multiple Sri Lankan districts and analyzed them for the presence of potential contaminants. A literature review was also conducted to assess effective policies regarding alternative sources of drinking water, with a specific focus on reverse osmosis (RO) units. This project did not identify a clear association between a measured contaminant or set of contaminants and disease, suggesting that any link may involve a contaminant not measured by this project, such as agrochemicals, or a complex synergism. A series of policy recommendations were promulgated, which can be used to ensure that Sri Lankans have access to safe, sanitary drinking water and that the incidence of CKDu is reduced.

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O'Hara, Shannon (2022). Renal Health, Groundwater Contamination, and Water Policy in Sri Lanka. Master's project, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/24831.


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