UAB is leading several projects together with community partners to evaluate public health related to failing sanitation in the Black Belt of Alabama.

The health of you and your family is important. Unfortunately, failing septic systems and the use of straight pipe systems for sewage disposal are common throughout rural communities without access to public sewers. Due to poor sanitation, children and pregnant women are at a higher risk of contracting intestinal infections and parasites that may lead to vomiting, diarrhea, and fatigue

The Sanitation Health Program, funded by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is committed to reducing and preventing health hazards caused by failing sanitation across these west central Black Belt counties: Choctaw, Dallas, Greene, Hale, Marengo, Perry Sumter, and Wilcox.

Through our 5-year project, our goal is to:

  • Work with community organizations to educate the public on poor sanitation
  • Improve failing sanitation systems across the Black Belt
  • Connect at-risk communities with local healthcare services and providers

This project is a collaborative effort between UAB, the Rural Health Medical Program, Inc. (RHMP), the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH), and the Consortium for Rural Alabama Water and Wastewater Management (CFRAWAWM) and the CDC.

Target Areas

Our work takes place within an eight-county region identified as high risk due to rates of failing sanitation. These counties (Dallas, Hale, Lowndes, Marengo, Monroe, Perry, Sumter, and Wilcox) are served by the West Central Alabama Area Health Education Center (AHEC). To expand our reach, we will work with local healthcare centers to provide education and resources directly to communities.

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