Azerbaijan is party to the Protocol on Water and Health to the UN Water Convention: the international agreement to achieve safe drinking water supply and adequate sanitation for everyone. Every party is required to establish targets for the water supply and sanitation sectors and monitor progress. Azerbaijan has implemented successful measures that have improved access to sanitation, in particular in rural areas. The EU4Environment Water and Data programme analyses water sector policy reform options to include in the post-pandemic development process.
Regarding water and health, the EU4Environment Water and Data programme also promotes monitoring COVID-19 in wastewater. Non-infective RNA fragments of SARS-CoV-2 are also present in the faeces of individuals infected with the virus regardless of their health status (symptomatic, asymptomatic, pre-symptomatic, convalescent). When combined with clinical testing, hospitalisation rates and epidemiological data, wastewater surveillance for SARS-CoV-2 can track and identify whether the virus is present at an early stage, and determine its geographic coverage and intensity. Wastewater epidemiological surveillance has been used for decades to identify e.g. polio outbreaks. To deal with future public health challenges, wastewater-based epidemiological monitoring can provide a valuable source of information for public health decision-makers to support health-related measures.
Protocol on Water and Health
COVID-19 monitoring in wastewater
Environment Agency Austria