Biomedical Waste Management Practices in Health Centers in Chandigarh, India

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Community Medicine, Government Medical College and Hospital, Chandigarh,

2 Department of Community Medicine, Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri Government Medical College, Mandi, Himachal Pradesh, India



Any waste, which is generated during the diagnosis, treatment, or immunization of human beings or animals or in research activities pertaining thereto or in the production or testing of biological products, is defined as biomedical waste (BMW). The World Health Organization states that 85% of hospital is nonhazardous. Ten percent of the remaining waste is infectious and 5% is noninfectious but hazardous wastes. Thus, about 15%–35% of hospital waste is regulated as infectious waste.
The aim of this study is to assess the awareness, attitude, and practices of medical officers and paramedical workers regarding BMW management.
Materials and Methods: 
The present study was conducted in the dispensaries of Chandigarh city. The study participants included the medical officers and paramedical health workers working in the public health set up.
The knowledge of medical officers and paramedical workers regarding needle stick injury was 84.3% and 73.3%, respectively. 31.2% of doctors and 36.7% of paramedical workers had received training for BMW management, whereas 65.6% of doctors and 66.7% of paramedical workers had received hepatitis B immunization. Gloves and mask were most common protective devices used among doctors (68.8% and 53.1%) and paramedical workers (68.9% and 33.3%), respectively. Handwashing facility was present in all centers (100%) in Chandigarh. Knowledge regarding the disposal of radioactive waste was poor among all levels of health-care workers (28.1% among medical officers and 5% paramedical workers).
The gap exists between the knowledge and practices of segregation of BMW. The importance of training regarding BMW management needs to be emphasized. Training of paramedical workers should be held at regular intervals.