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Waste management is one of the necessary conditions for the fight against the coronavirus!

Geneva, March 24, 2020 - because of the pandemic caused by the coronavirus infection (COVID-19)

continues to spread, and its impact on human health and the economy is increasing day by day, we call on governments to look into the field of waste management, including medical, household and other hazardous waste, as this is one of the necessary conditions to minimize possible secondary effects on the environment.

Such explosions additionally generate many types of medical and hazardous waste, including infected masks, gloves, and other protective equipment, as well as greater volumes of the same types of non-infected waste. Improper management of these wastes can have an unexpected impact on human health and the environment. Therefore, the safe management and final disposal of these wastes is a vital component of effective emergency response.

For the effective management of biomedical and health care waste, it is necessary to properly identify, collect, sort, store, transport, process and dispose of this waste, as well as take into account such important issues as disinfection, personnel protection and training. The technical document of the UN Basel Convention "Guidelines on the Environmentally Sound Management of Biomedical and Healthcare Wastes" (Guidelines on the Environmentally Sound Management of Biomedical and Healthcare Wastes) provides information and practical aspects that will help authorities to minimize threats to human health and the environment.

Other resources on the safe management and disposal of medical waste can be found in the Basel Convention Asia-Pacific Regional

The website of the Center (based in Beijing), which lists a range of guidance documents and best practices.

During the emergency caused by COVID-19, it seems that the safe management of household waste will also be essential. Medical waste, such as contaminated masks, gloves, used or expired medications, etc., can easily be mixed with household waste, but should be managed as hazardous waste and disposed of separately. These wastes should be kept separately from other household wastes, and they should be collected by specialized municipal or waste management operators. The specifics of processing and disposal of such waste are described in detail in the Basel Convention document: "Factsheet on Healthcare or Medical Waste".

The parties to the Basel Convention are currently working on a guidance document on the safe management of household waste. It is not yet complete, but an initial version can be used as a temporary guide. Rolf Payet, Executive Secretary of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions, said: "All branches of society have come together to defeat the virus collectively and minimize the impact of COVID-19 on people and economies around the world. As we grapple with this grand and unprecedented challenge, we urge decision-makers at all levels, including international, national, municipal, city and district levels, to make every effort to ensure waste management, including attention and indeed priority from medical and domestic sources Management of generated waste. This is necessary to minimize the impact of these potentially hazardous waste streams on human health and the environment."Source:


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