The Chulli Water Purifier: Acceptability and Effectiveness of an Innovative Strategy for Household Water Treatment in Bangladesh

Sundeep K. Gupta Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; ICDDR,B: International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh, Dhaka, Bangladesh; United Nations Children’s Fund, Dhaka, Bangladesh; School of Public Health and Health Professions, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York, Buffalo, New York

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M. S. Islam Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; ICDDR,B: International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh, Dhaka, Bangladesh; United Nations Children’s Fund, Dhaka, Bangladesh; School of Public Health and Health Professions, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York, Buffalo, New York

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Richard Johnston Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; ICDDR,B: International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh, Dhaka, Bangladesh; United Nations Children’s Fund, Dhaka, Bangladesh; School of Public Health and Health Professions, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York, Buffalo, New York

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Pavani Kalluri Ram Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; ICDDR,B: International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh, Dhaka, Bangladesh; United Nations Children’s Fund, Dhaka, Bangladesh; School of Public Health and Health Professions, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York, Buffalo, New York

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Stephen P. Luby Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; ICDDR,B: International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh, Dhaka, Bangladesh; United Nations Children’s Fund, Dhaka, Bangladesh; School of Public Health and Health Professions, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York, Buffalo, New York

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To evaluate the effectiveness of the chulli water purifier, a new household water treatment strategy in Bangladesh that relies on passing water through a stove, we interviewed persons who had this water purifier. From households using it regularly, we tested untreated water, sand-filtered water without heat pasteurization, sand-filtered and heat pasteurized water, and household stored, treated water. Reasons for discontinuing use among 80 of 101 persons included mechanical problems (49%), inconvenience (35%), and high cost (10%). Only four households were regularly using the purifier. Three (19%) of 16 heat-treated samples were positive for Escherichia coli. The median log reduction from source water was > 5. Nine (56%) stored water samples were positive for E. coli, indicating recontamination. Poor durability, inconvenience, high cost, and post-treatment contamination limit the usefulness of the purifier. These issues, which are relevant for other household water treatment strategies, should be resolved before further implementation.

Author Notes

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