Knowledge, Attitude, and Practices about Biomedical Waste Management among Healthcare Personnel: A Cross-sectional Study

Indian J Community Med. 2011 Apr;36(2):143-5. doi: 10.4103/0970-0218.84135.


Background: The waste produced in the course of healthcare activities carries a higher potential for infection and injury than any other type of waste. Inadequate and inappropriate knowledge of handling of healthcare waste may have serious health consequences and a significant impact on the environment as well.

Objective: The objective was to assess knowledge, attitude, and practices of doctors, nurses, laboratory technicians, and sanitary staff regarding biomedical waste management.

Materials and methods: This was a cross-sectional study.

Setting: The study was conducted among hospitals (bed capacity >100) of Allahabad city.

Participants: Medical personnel included were doctors (75), nurses (60), laboratory technicians (78), and sanitary staff (70).

Results: Doctors, nurses, and laboratory technicians have better knowledge than sanitary staff regarding biomedical waste management. Knowledge regarding the color coding and waste segregation at source was found to be better among nurses and laboratory staff as compared to doctors. Regarding practices related to biomedical waste management, sanitary staff were ignorant on all the counts. However, injury reporting was low across all the groups of health professionals.

Conclusion: The importance of training regarding biomedical waste management needs emphasis; lack of proper and complete knowledge about biomedical waste management impacts practices of appropriate waste disposal.

Keywords: Biomedical waste management; hospital; medical professionals.