National Standards And Procedures For Health Care Waste Management
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Standard Operating Procedures

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Jan 13 2022


Healthcare services provision is the genesis of health care waste generation. Health care waste carries a higher potential for causing infection and injury compared to other types of waste. Inadequate and inappropriate healthcare waste management (HCWM) may result into serious public health consequences including pollution of the environment. The effects to health associated with exposure to healthcare waste varies from minor injuries to getting serious infections such as HIV, Hepatitis B and other blood-borne infections. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the risk of HIV and HBV due to exposure to sharps is estimated to be 0.3% and 30% respectively. The risk of acquiring diseases is even higher in scavengers who frequent dumps without wearing the necessary protective gears. Pollution of air, water and environment in general caused by inappropriate burning and indiscriminate disposal of health care waste has been known to be one of the major causes of chronic diseases such as cancer among exposed population.

This advancement of services in the health care delivery system in Tanzania, has led to an increased generation of HCW that was not addressed previously. It is in this regard that the MOHCDGEC has taken its position to review and develop new National Standards and procedures for health care waste that will be used by Local Government Authorities (LGAs), health care facilities, and implementers to promote proper management of health care waste. To achieve an effective health care waste management system requires a multi-sector approach, collaboration and involvement of stakeholders at all levels of the health care delivery system that is National, Zonal, Regional, Council and Community. These standards and procedures coupled with a legal framework, training of personnel, and raising public awareness are essential elements of a successful health care waste management system. To-date, health care waste management is growing in demand in the health facilities and it is in this vein that it should ...