Medical Waste Management

The trash generated during medical or diagnostic procedures is referred to as medical waste. It may be hazardous waste or non-hazardous waste. People who come in contact with medical waste run the risk of being injured, getting sick, being exposed to chemicals, having a fire or explosion, and being radioactive. Medical waste also poses a threat to environmental contamination and pollution. There is a strong need for medical waste management services due to the quantity of medical waste produced by hospitals, labs, and nursing homes.

The use of plastic and medical technology is currently rising at a rate of 6% annually. Although plastic lessens the likelihood of infection spreading within the hospital, it harms the environment. The Ministry of Environment and Forest passed a statute in 1986, and in June 1998 it published the Biomedical Waste (Management and Handling Rules) notification. The statute defines biomedical waste as any waste produced during the diagnosis, treatment, and immunisation of humans or animals, as well as during research operations.

Medical waste is divided into two categories: hazardous and non-hazardous waste. The non-hazardous and hazardous waste, services, source (hospitals & clinics, diagnostic laboratories, research laboratories, other sources), treatment (incineration, autoclaving, chemical treatment, and other treatments), and geography are the segments used to analyse the global medical waste management market (North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East & Africa). The report also assesses industry rivals and examines the national and regional marketplaces.

There are both solid and liquid kinds of biomedical waste. Biomedical waste examples include:


  • Waste sharps such as needles,  syringes, scalpels, and broken glass
  • Human tissues or identifiable body parts (as a result of amputation)
  • Animal tissues and waste from veterinary hospitals
  • Used bandage, dressings, gloves, and other medical supplies
  • Liquid waste from infected areas
  • Laboratory wastes

WHO estimates that 30% of healthcare facilities worldwide lack the necessary equipment to manage medical waste burdens. Due to the increasing demand for healthcare waste management services during the COVID-19 pandemic, the global market for medical waste management was under a great deal of strain. The COVID-19 pandemic’s production of hazardous medical waste as well as the contamination hazards connected to waste management have raised significant concerns. The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in an additional 10,000 tonnes of medical waste being produced, according to WHO. While nations were actively acquiring goods including personal protective equipment, PPE kits, diagnostic test kits, disinfection chemicals, and vaccines, the safe and sustainable management of COVID-19-related medical waste received less focus and funding.

Hazardous biomedical waste exposure can result in disease or harm to human health. Due to inappropriate handling of medical wastes, the three most often disseminated viruses globally are hepatitis B, C, and HIV. They spread through wounds caused by contaminated needles and syringes. Those most at risk from the negative impacts of biomedical waste are doctors, nurses, and sanitation personnel. The significance of proper treatment of medical wastes cannot be overstated at a time when new coronavirus strains are rapidly emerging. There are numerous technologies available for use in treatment, including:

  • Incineration
  • Chemical Disinfection
  • Wet Thermal Treatment
  • Microwave Irradiation
  • Land Disposal
  • Inertization

According to waste type, the non-hazardous waste segment is anticipated to hold the greatest proportion of the global market for the management of medical waste in 2022. There are no specific biological, chemical, radioactive, or physical risks posed by the non-hazardous medical waste. Increased surgical operations worldwide are the main cause causing this sector to hold a significant market share.

In terms of services, the collection, transportation, and storage sector is anticipated to hold the largest market share for medical waste management worldwide in 2022. The high amount of medical waste produced globally, which also increases demand for collection, transportation, and storage services for medical waste, is responsible for this segment’s significant market share.

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