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Modern Plumbing's Impact on Public Health

WACO, Texas (March 4, 2014) - Modern medical advances, like vaccines and new medical procedures, are what comes to mind for most people as the greatest advancements in public health. Yet throughout history, plumbing innovations have been a leading influence on health revolutions. For World Plumbing Month, Mr. Rooter reviews how these advances improved worldwide health.

Evidence of the first plumbing systems appear as early at 6000 BC. Soon after, the Roman Empire developed an advanced plumbing system of aqueducts and underground sewage. Utilizing lead pipes changed sanitation safety in the Roman world, improving sanitary conditions and public health. The magnificent architectural remnants of aqueducts built by the Roman Empire pay homage to the beginnings of modern plumbing.

Water-borne diseases, like the plague, spread quickly throughout large populations due to poor water quality and a lack of proper waste disposal. Cities were a dangerous mix of large populations and improper waste disposal, making it hard for those living in the city to avoid contact with disease. Cholera, typhoid fever and other diseases spread rapidly, causing average life expectancy to drop.

The 1800s and 1900s brought the greatest advancements, as regulations were passed and sanitary quality improved. The National Public Health Act was passed in 1848, improving plumbing standards for the future of humanity. This was the beginning of a sanitation revolution that would greatly improve general well-being worldwide. In fact, plumbing advances in the early twentieth century caused the average lifespan of Americans to double. Stopping the rapid spread of water-borne diseases, plumbing has proven to be an imperative asset of public health.

The introduction of closed sewer systems and the modern toilet dramatically improved the quality of health and increased quality of life for average citizens of developed countries. Cities across the world realized the best fix for stopping diseases and promoting sanitation was to install sewer systems that took hazardous waste away from homes and city streets. They also began installing toilets that disposed of waste in a safer manner.

“It’s hard to imagine a world without these basic plumbing amenities,” stated Mr. Rooter President and licensed plumber, Mary Kennedy Thompson. “We often over look the effect they have had on public health.” Even now, improper sanitation and unsafe drinking water spread diseases throughout large populations in developing countries. “Improving access to unpolluted water and proper sanitation methods continues to be the key in improving health worldwide,” concluded Thompson

For the month of March, Mr. Rooter plumbing encourages consumers to invest in the improvement of water sanitation abroad and in water conservation at home.