Healthcare waste is such waste which is generated from healthcare facilities, natal care, treatment centers of human and animals. It mainly includes different types of wastes such as sharps, infected syringes, animal and human tissues, drugs and medicines. There are different health risks associated with each type of waste so their management is necessary.
Healthcare waste is of several types and its exposure to public, nurses, cleanliness staff, patients and paramedical staff is from several routes like inhalation, ingestion and skin contact. Once it gets entry into environment it causes several health impacts which may lead to death. There are guidelines and treatment systems in Pakistan for the treatment of healthcare waste but since there is no system of check and balance so condition is worse here. Most of the diseases are caused from the exposure to different types of healthcare waste. So there is need to treat this waste according to WHO guidelines before its final disposal into environment.
Government and associated departments should step in to control the situation. There is serious need of handling of waste specially sharps and syringes, pathological waste and infectious waste.
Hospitals, which are major part of healthcare waste, must be charged if they don’t handle waste properly.
Workers should be given trainings for the awareness of health hazardous of healthcare waste.
There should be strict rules and regulations for the use of protective equipment such as gloves and masks and special dress for the collection and disposal of waste.
Above all, there should be proper system for the segregation, collection, storage and transportation of waste.
Storage area must be separate and away from healthcare facility so that it cannot affect health of workers.