Awareness Level of Workers in the Management of Medical Waste Generated from Hospitals in Bayelsa State (Published)
There is an increase awareness of the public on the dangers associated with the improper disposal of medical waste in this country predominantly waste contaminated with communicable disease agent. Given the general lack of knowledge and effective practice of medical waste documentation about the composition of bio-hazardous waste and the large amount generated, it becomes so difficult to evaluate strategies for waste reduction. The present work presents awareness level of workers in the management of medical waste generated from hospitals in Bayelsa State. The study aimed at assessing the awareness levels and knowledge on the documentation of medical waste among healthcare workers in the various healthcare institutions. The waste generated were weighed kg at source (various unit) for days, week monthly for a period of 3nonths at various unit in the health facilities. Other relevant data were obtained via well-structured questionnaire, and considering the Cochran formula, a sample size of 300 was obtained. Data were further analysed using simple percentage, frequency and charts. Result indicated that there was very poor awareness level of workers in the management of medical waste generated from hospitals in Bayelsa State, and that the level of knowledge on waste documentation as a practice of medical waste management was poor and supercilious in a twenty first century medical waste management process. Thus, it was recommended that the concern government agency should carry out sensitization, awareness, training and retraining of medical workers at the various healthcare institutions on effective medical waste management. Staff of the various hospitals should be properly trained on significance of documentation of waste generated in the various unit on the health facility and there should be provision of all medical waste management infrastructures to cushion the likely impact of these wastes on the on the workers and the general environment.
Keywords: Waste Generation, healthcare institution, medical waste, medical waste management, pathological waste and genotoxic waste, sharp waste, waste documentation