The Hanoitimes - By 2025, 100% of harmful medical solid and liquid waste in health facilities across the city is expected to be collected and treated following environmental standards.
The Hanoi government has approved a plan to radically treat medical waste at health facilities in a move to avoid biochemical waste from causing infections or epidemic outbreaks, Hanoimoi newspaper reported.
The People’s Committee of Hanoi approved the scheme of “Treating clinical waste in Hanoi by 2020, with a view to the year 2025”. Under the scheme, 100% of health facilities will have standard wastewater treatment systems installed by 2020 and 100% of medical waste, either solid or liquid, in all health facilities will be collected and treated.
Hospitals to close all incinerators
A worker operates medical waste treatment system in Nam Son, Tu Liem District, Hanoi. Photo: Hanoimoi
Hanoi is now home to 3,676 existing health facilities which discharged in 2018 an average amount of 27.5 tons of clinical waste per day, in which the toxic waste accounted for 30%, or 8.4 ton per day. It is predicted that the daily medical waste disposed will rise to 90 ton by 2020 and 150 ton by 2030.
According to Deputy Director of Hanoi's Department of Health Hoang Duc Hanh, the rising number of health facilities has brought about a significant increase in medical waste that causes negative impact on soil, water, air, human health and even the ecology.
Results from a survey conducted by Hanoi Department of Natural Resources and Environment in 2018 showed that, solid medical waste is treated under three models namely on-spot, concentrating and clustering treatment.
However, due to a number of inefficient incinerators, failed emissions control devices and downgraded waste water management system, the waste is not burned completely. Until now, there are only two hospitals using on-spot incinerators to do away with waste, and they will be closed in 2020 as the substandard system produces black smoke, toxic odor and emissions.
To apply concentrating model of medical waste treatment
According to Director of Hanoi’s Health Department Nguyen Khac Hien, the department will conduct surveys at all health facilities and public hospitals in Hanoi to examine medical waste management capacity and report to the municipal People’s Committee to allocate investment where the wastewater treatment is downgraded.
For harmful solid medical waste in some facilities, it is possible to follow the model of receiving and storing waste in cluster before transporting them to the specialized locations of the city to descard. Besides, suburban facilities where less medical waste is produced can follow the clustering model to treat waste effectively and save money.
By 2025, 100% of harmful medical solid and liquid waste in health facilities across the city is expected to be collected and treated following environmental standards.