COVID-19 pandemic-borne wastes imposed a severe threat to human lives as well as the total environment. Improper handling of these wastes increases the possibility of future transmission. Therefore, immediate actions are required from both local and international authorities to mitigate the amount of waste generation and ensure proper disposal of these wastes, especially for low-income and developing countries where solid waste management is challenging. In this study, an attempt is made to estimate healthcare waste generated during the COVID-19 pandemic in Bangladesh. This study includes infected, ICU, deceased, isolated and quarantined patients as the primary sources of medical waste. Results showed that COVID-19 medical waste from these patients was 658.08 tons in March 2020 and increased to 16164.74 tons in April 2021. A top portion of these wastes was generated from infected and quarantined patients. Based on survey data, approximate daily usage of face masks and hand gloves is also determined. Probable waste generation from COVID-19 confirmatory tests and vaccination has been simulated. Finally, several guidelines are provided to ensure the country's proper disposal and management of COVID-related wastes.
Chowdhury, T., Chowdhury, H., Rahman, M. S., Hossain, N., Ahmed, A., & Sait, S. M. (2021). Estimation of the healthcare waste generation during COVID-19 pandemic in Bangladesh. The Science of the total environment, 152295. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.152295
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The Science of the Total Environment