← All Posts

Research on Medical Waste Management at National Referral Hospital

Production of toxic Medical Wastes (MW) is one of the inevitable practices of any health care center. MW comprises the entire waste from healthcare facilities, veterinary facilities, clinics, home-based facilities, and clinical laboratories.

There are multiple medical waste categories, including chemicals, general waste, infectious, pharmaceuticals, among others. Hazardous MW means waste that can affect humans adversely or the surroundings if not effectively managed.

Management and treatment of MW is a major concern because of the danger it can cause to human health and the environment. MW is particularly important in developing countries, Curbing and managing medical wastes practices vary from one healthcare facility to another.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has set guidelines to manage medical waste in different facilities. Other nations have come up with policies on proper medical waste management to ensure safety for human health and the environment. The set guidelines and rules on the management of wastes are to be implemented by different stakeholders.

Medical Waste Research
In March-April 2019, a study was done to access the awareness and implementation of medical waste management at the National Referral hospital. The study focused on health care providers and support staff.

According to the research, it was established that implementing these guidelines has been challenging in most developing countries due to inadequate training, lack of resources, economic issues, social problems, among other constraints. Of the respondents,
•    74.4% know about the medical waste management
•    56.8% didn’t receive training or education on waste management
•    Only 37.6% were aware of the medical waste maximum time limit
•    98.2 know the importance of using proper personal protective equipment
•    61.3% segregated waste correctly

When creating awareness on proper medical waste management, some of the notable challenges need to be solved through close monitoring and regular training to health care providers.

This calls for Government and National support to help in creating awareness on effective medical waste management programs. The staffs from National Referral Hospitals need to also train other healthcare providers on the right methods to manage medical wastes. These measures will help to strengthen the waste management system in referral hospitals.