Availability of drinking water in rural and remote communities in New South Wales, Australia

Availability of drinking water in rural and remote communities in New South Wales, Australia Journal Article

Australian Journal of Primary Health

  • Author(s): Perry, Christina, Dimitropoulos, Yvonne, Skinner, John, Bourke, Chris, Miranda, Kate, Cain, Elyse, Beaufils, Damien, Christie, Vita, Rambaldini, Boe, Gwynne, Kylie
  • Published: 2022

Abstract: Many rural communities in New South Wales (NSW), Australia, have poor-quality water supplies. The lack of a palatable alternative increases the risk of the high consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages, a significant contributor to adverse health outcomes. This disproportionately effects Aboriginal people living in these towns, who are also profoundly affected by the social determinants of health. Therefore, examining health inequalities linked to water access is important. This study investigated the availability of drinking water fountains in rural and remote communities in NSW. Telephone interviewer-assisted surveys were conducted with 32 representatives from local government councils or Local Aboriginal Land Councils in NSW from communities with a population of <5000 and an Aboriginal population of at least 3%. The results were analysed descriptively. Towns and communities with a higher population of Aboriginal people and lower median weekly income were less likely to have access to free refrigerated and filtered water within the community or at local schools compared with towns and communities with a lower Aboriginal population and higher median weekly income. The availability of free, clean and refrigerated water in rural and remote communities is critical to reducing the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and the promotion of water as the preferred drink.

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Suggested Citation
Perry, Christina, Dimitropoulos, Yvonne, Skinner, John, Bourke, Chris, Miranda, Kate, Cain, Elyse, Beaufils, Damien, Christie, Vita, Rambaldini, Boe, Gwynne, Kylie, 2022, Availability of drinking water in rural and remote communities in New South Wales, Australia, Journal Article, viewed 22 June 2024, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=29543.

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