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ASSESSMENT OF MEDICAL WASTE MANAGEMENT IN EDUCATIONAL HOSPITALS OF TEHRAN UNIVERSITY MEDICAL SCIENCES

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Author(s): M. H. Dehghani, K. Azam, F. Changani, E. Dehghani Fard

Journal: Iranian Journal of Environmental Health Science & Engineering
ISSN 1735-1979

Volume: 5;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 131;
Date: 2008;
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Keywords: Medical waste | transportation | treatment | management | healthcare hospital

ABSTRACT
The management of medical waste is of great importance due to its potential environmental hazards and public health risks. In the past, medical waste was often mixed with municipal solid waste and disposed in residential waste landfills or improper treatment facilities in Iran. In recent years, many efforts have been made by environmental regulatory agencies and waste generators to better managing the wastes from healthcare facilities. This study was carried in 12 educational hospitals of Tehran University of Medical Sciences. The goals of this study were to characterize solid wastes generated in healthcare hospitals, to report the current status of medical waste management and to provide a framework for the safe management of these wastes at the considered hospitals. The methodology was descriptive, cross-sectional and consisted of the use of surveys and interviews with the authorities of the healthcare facilities and with personnel involved in the management of the wastes. The results showed that medical wastes generated in hospitals were extremely heterogeneous in composition. 42% of wastes were collected in containers and plastic bags. In 75% of hospitals, the stay-time in storage sites was about 12-24h. 92% of medical wastes of hospitals were collected by covered-trucks. In 46% of hospitals, transferring of medical wastes to temporary stations was done manually. The average of waste generation rates in the hospitals was estimated to be 4.42kg/bed/day.

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