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 ENG  Vol.8 No.7 , July 2016
Analysis of Health Workers’ Perceptions on Medical Waste Management in Tanzanian Hospitals
Abstract: This paper presents the perceptions of health workers (HWs) on medical waste management (MWM) issues in Tanzanian hospitals. The perceived total waste generation rates were lower than the actual measurements. Administrators perceived lower rates than implementers. The results indicated three categories of medical waste which are given due attention, that is, sharps waste, pathological and infectious waste. Other wastes like radioactive, chemical, pharmaceutical, pressurized containers receive very little attention. Container colour coding and labelling was negligible, while improvised containers are still in use. Medical waste is transported within hospitals manually, with little efforts on mechanized transportation. Poor waste storage was observed, while the prominent medical waste treatment technologies are medium temperature incinerators. Off-site transportation of medical waste is practiced, where the waste is finally dumped or buried. The hospitals are currently utilizing public-private partnership schemes for MWM in only one aspect of off-site transportation. Three main problems which require high attention include: Weaknesses in hospital management, poor MWM infrastructure, and lack of skills and knowledge on MWM among HWs. Knowledge and awareness among HWs on health hazards associated with poor MWM is low (with exception of cholera, HIV and typhoid). Few PPE types are supplied and used in the hospitals, leading to poor diseases prevention. There is also low knowledge among HWs on administrative issues related to MWM in Tanzanian hospitals.
Cite this paper: Kagonji, I. and Manyele, S. (2016) Analysis of Health Workers’ Perceptions on Medical Waste Management in Tanzanian Hospitals. Engineering, 8, 445-459. doi: 10.4236/eng.2016.87042.
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