The use of face masks, medical gowns, gloves and scrubs as part of precautionary measures to stem the spread of coronavirus has inevitably increased not only the quantity but the level of such medical waste generated in the country.
It has become imperative for authorities to devise ways to dispose of such waste safely.
In that regard, a virologist at Kumasi Center for Collaborative Research, Dr Michael Owusu has called for the strict segregation of waste in institutions and offices as a measure to prevent the potential spread of the virus as concerns soar over inappropriate disposal of waste.
“For all those who put on medical masks or any and other medical stuff in relation to diseases and infections, you must have two bins available. One bin must have a yellow bag with a hazard symbol on it, signifying that that particular waste is infectious,” he clarified to Komla Adom on JoyNews Prime June 6.
“And a black bag is for general waste. So if you have a mask you must put it in a yellow rubber bin. That yellow bin will have to go through a system before it is disposed off.”
Dr Owusu also called for a waste policy surpluses policy to facilitate the management of waste emanating from Covid-related waste to prevent in order not to complicate the spread of the novel coronavirus.
The virologist further said, “we have to quickly work on it to ensure that we don’t give it another route for transmission of the virus which will make our fight against Covid-19 very difficult.”
Management of medical waste in Ghana has been a matter of concern since the onset of the pandemic. It however remains to be seen, how the adherence to basic waste separation methods as advised, will be exhibited going forward.