The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said that some 17.84 million households had access to a safer water supply in 2019, higher by 64% compared to 2010 levels.
Citing data from the Health Department, the PSA said “households getting basic safe water from various types of improved drinking-water supply” stood at around 73% out of the 24.58 million households, as of 2019.
Of the 17.84 million households, the majority or 57.3% were classified as under Level 3 or had a water reservoir with a distribution system and independent household taps.
Those under Level 2 — households operating with a communal faucet system with a distribution system but who also had a shared water outlet — comprised 14.2%. Those classified under Level 1 — households with a reservoir that did not have a distribution system — accounted for 28.5%.
During the period, the National Capital Region registered the highest number of households — 2.49 million — which had access to safer water, followed by Calabarzon at 2.33 million and Western Visayas at 1.62 million.
Meanwhile, the Zamboanga Peninsula had number of households with access to safe water among all 17 regions at 208,427 households.
“From 2010 to 2019, an annual average of 85.5% of the total households in the Philippines had access to improved safe water supply as recorded by the Department of Health,” the PSA said in a press release issued on Thursday.
Clean Water and Sanitation is among the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations (UN).
According to the UN, one in three people do not have access to safe drinking water, and two out of five people cannot access basic hand-washing facilities with soap and water.
It added that the global COVID-19 health emergency has demonstrated the need for adequate access to clean water to promote hand hygiene, which is deemed as one of the most effective actions in reducing the spread of pathogens and preventing infections. — Angelica Y. Yang