Document Type: Original Article
Research Center for Health Sciences, Institute of Health, Department of Environmental Health, School of Health, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
Student Research Committee, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran
Health and Environmental Research Center, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran
Department of Environmental Health Engineering, School of Public Health, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran
Background: Health care waste (HCW) management is highly important and has received special attention from the authorities and people.
Objectives: This study was conducted to investigate the management of HCW in general and specialized hospitals of Tabriz, Iran.
Methods: In this descriptive cross-sectional study, field investigations were conducted on gathering data on HCW management activities using the WHO questionnaire including 100 questions through observation.
Results: This study indicated that the total in-use beds in the studied hospitals were 3953 beds. The total amount of generating wastes in the hospitals was 13349.5 kg day-1, of which 10059 kg day-1 (75.4%) was general waste and the remaining 24.6% (3290.5 kg day-1) was categorized as medical waste. The medical waste was categorized further into infectious (3002.50 kg day-1), sharp (171.80 kg day-1), chemical (63.15 kg day-1), and pathological (52.55 kg day-1) wastes. In general and specialized hospitals, 56% and 31% of the waste separation was at a good level, respectively. The results showed that the chemical process (37.5%) was the mostly used method for the treatment of medical waste in the studied hospitals.
Conclusions: Generally, the rate of waste generation in general hospitals was more than that in specialized hospitals. Higher waste generation in general hospitals can be due to the fact that in these hospitals the amount and diversity of the health services provided were more than specialized hospitals. Good separation of general wastes from medical ones, proper health waste management, and training of staff for correct segregation of wastes can lead to a reduction of treatment charges.
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