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Bio- Medical Waste Pollution

Bio- Medical Waste Pollution

Ø  Introduction Bio-medical waste (BMW) pollution is the pollution caused by the generation of waste materials during the diagnosis and treatment of human being or animal from hospitals, diagnostic labs and animal houses or in research activities related to bio- medicals. Bio-medical waste may be solid or liquid. Biological waste includes petri dishes, surgical wraps, culture tubes, syringes, needles, blood vials, absorbent material, personal protective equipment and pipette tips also. Infectious bio-waste is disease laden as the bacteria are capable of multiplying and pose a substantial threat to human health, as improper disposal can lead to spend of disease.

  A/C to the report of WHO, “ 85 % of the bio- medical waste is not hazardous and the rest of 15 % of waste is hazardous, but only of this 5 %  is non- infectious hazardous material and 10 % is infectious hazardous material.”

Ø  Definition of Bio-medical waste pollution:-

  Bio- medical waste (BMW) is defined as any waste that 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 and including categories mentioned in Schedule-I”


  Bio- medical waste is defined as “ Any waste that 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 biologicals and including categories mentioned in Schedule-I”.


  Bio- medical waste is defined as “ Any waste that is generated during the diagnosis, treatment or immunization of human being or animals or in research activities and includes categories mentioned in Schedule-I.”

Ø  Nature of Bio-Medical waste:-

  Bio-waste may be solid or liquid like dressing, swabs, human tissue, used bandages, discarded gloves, masks, aprons, needles, scalpels, etc. Liquid wastes include blood and other body fluids.

  Bio-hazardous waste is biological in nature, capacity of multiplying and causing disease in other living organisms. Bio- hazardous agents include, but are not limited to, bacteria, fungi, viruses, rickettsia, chlamydia, prion, parasites, recombinant products, allergens, cultured human and animal cells are the potentially bio-hazardous agents. These cells may contain, infected clinical specimens, tissues from experimental animals, plant viruses, bacteria and fungi, toxins, and other bio hazardous agents.

  Cytotoxic drugs are another form of bio-medical waste. Medications that are potentially detrimental or destructive to cells within the body are called cytotoxic drugs. They pose maximum risk in the event of occupational exposure.

  They include antineoplastic and chemotherapy medications used for cancer and other diseases, medications to treat autoimmune diseases like arthritis, antiviral medications, hormones, some bioengineered medication and other miscellaneous medications.

Ø  Classification of Bio- Medical Waste:-

  (i)   Infectious wasteThis includes waste generated from surgery, biopsies and autopsies on patients suffering the infectious disease like sharps, lab cultures, tissues, swabs, equipments, syringes, blades and excreta, etc.

  (ii)   Pathological wastehuman tissue, organs and fluids e.g. body parts, blood, and other body fluids.

  (iii)   Radiactive waste Various substances including solids, liquids and gaseous wasted contaminated with radioactive substances used in diagnoses and treatment of the patient.

Ø  Impact of Bio- Medical Waste:-

  (i)   Infectious Diseases Infectious organisms breed on the wastes and spread several diseases.

  v  Mosquitoes that transmit insect-borne disease, like malaria and filarial.

  v  Common house flies, which transmit infections mechanically.

  v  Many other insects and worms that causes nuisance, e.g. cockroaches, ants.

  v  Rats thriving on refuse.

  (ii)  Nosocomial infections and AIDS, Hepatitis- B, C, etc., are transmitted through sharps of several types. Which form considerable part of the BMW.

  (iii)  Geno- toxic and radioactive wastes are responsible for toxicity ranging from the headache, nausea, vomiting to the skin ailments and sometimes may trigger cancer also.

  (iv)  In general, working with near hazardous medications can leas to skin rashes, infertility, m, miscarriages, birth defect, organ toxicities, leukemia or other caners.

  (v)  Nurses and attendants can come in contracts with these drugs during patient handling, through body fluids, bed linear and other medical equipment.

  (vi)  Some cytotoxic drugs like Altratamine, amino glotethimide, dactinmycin, streptozin, daunorobicin, etc. may sometimes create very dangerous diseases.

Ø  Principles of Waste Management:

  (i) Identification of Bio- medical wasteThe points of generation of bio- medical waste are identified. All the hospitals, nursing homes, veterinary hospitals, clinics, dispensaries, diagnostic laboratories, pathological laboratories, blood banks, mortuary and other healthcare establishments are the potential generators of bio-medical waste.

  (ii) Waste segregation of Bio- Medical waste It means the separation of different types of wastes. It is important because a little quantity of infectious hazardous waste can be eliminated at this stage, other wise it will have a disastrous impact. It is done at the site of production by the people related to the operator or hospital management. In this step, waste sharp ate are most dangerous.

  (iii) Collection of Bio-medical waste:-

  v  Bio- medical waste management is a government initiative in India. According to the guidelines of the central pollution control board (CPCB), the collection of transportation of bio- medical waste shall be carried out in a manner so as to avoid any possible hazard to human health and environment.

  v  The person responsible for collection of bio medical waste shall also carry a register with him to maintain the records such as name of the healthcare unit, the type and quantity of waste received, signature of the authorized person from the healthcare unit side, day and time of collection etc.

  v  The CPCB mandates that the generator of the bio-medical waste is responsible for providing segregated waste to the CBWTF operator. The wastes shall be segregated as per the provisions of the Bio-medical waste (Management & Handling) Rules, 1998.

  (iv)  Storage of Bio- medical wasteTemporary storage at healthcare unit shall be designated. The colored bags handed over the healthcare unit shall be collected in similar colored containers with cover. Each bag shall be labelled so that at any time, the healthcare units can be traced back if they are not segregating the bio-medical wastes. The colored containers should be strong enough to withsand any possible damage that may occur during loading, transportation or unloading of such containers. These containers shall also be duly labeled.

  (v)  Transportation of bio-medical wasteThe next step is the transportation of bio- medical waste from point of generation or collection to the point of final disposal. This is done as per the guidelines of BMW rules 1998.

  (vi)  Treatment of Bio- medical waste It means the methods and techniques involving the conversion of bio-medical waste into less volume disinfectors, neutralization or any other change of composition to reduce hazards to health and environment. 

Nidhivan foundation is a non-profit organization that works for environmental protection and save environment from bio medical waste pollution.


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