While the health impact of living on dirt floors is a developing area of research, there are multiple studies which cite dirt floor replacement as a possible health intervention with potential for big impact in the developing world. In Mexico, it has been shown that replacing a dirt floor with a concrete floor has the potential to reduce diarrhea by 49%, parasitic infections by 78%, and anemia by 81% while leading to a 36-96% improvement in cognitive development among young children. (Reference: Cattaneo, Matias D.; Galiano, Sebastian; Gertler, Paul J.; Martinez, Sebastian; Titiunik, Rocio. Housing, health, and happiness. In American Economic Journal: Economic Policy 2009, 1:1, 75–105.)

To show the positive impact from using earthen floors as opposed to cement-based floors, we are in the process of completing a health impact evaluation that compares the health of our customers before and after receiving the floors to similar control households in geographic areas where we have not yet scaled. By creating a hard and impermeable barrier between the bacteria and bugs in the floor and the humans that live on top of it, we eliminate dust, bugs, and other harmful human pathogens from the home environment to support clean, hygienic, and healthy living conditions.

What is the evidence that earthen floors make an impact?