Mausumi Basu1, Palash Das2, Ranabir Pal3
1Department of Community Medicine, IPGMER, Kolkata, West Bengal, India
2Department of Community Medicine, Midnapore Medical College, Paschim Medinipur, West Bengal, India.
3Sikkim Manipal Institute of Medical Sciences and Central Referral Hospital, Tadong, Gangtok, Sikkim, India.
Background: One-fourths of the biomedical waste (BMW) is regarded as hazardous with the potential for significant health concern for both medical personnel and general community. So, awareness about various aspects of BMW management is required and it was assessed among junior doctors in a tertiary care hospital. Objectives : To assess the knowledge and awareness about various aspects of BMW management among junior doctors (future physicians) and thus help the authority to develop the strategy for improving the situation in future. Materials and Methods: In this descriptive observational study, we interviewed 200 junior doctors of a tertiary care hospital of Kolkata using a pre-designed pre-tested self-administered, semi-structured, anonymous questionnaire. Results : Majority of the participants were in the age group of 22 to 24 years (62%), males (66.5%), hostelites (70.2%), belonged to nuclear family (80.1%), and had per capita monthly family income in the range of Rs 5 000 to 20 000 (61.4%). Almost all respondents (99.1%) heard about BMW, 94.4% heard about the BMW rule 1998, and 67.9% knew about the Bio Hazard symbol. Only 55.9% respondents could remember the ten category of BMW. Segregation at source (the golden rule of BMW) was known by 78.8% of the junior doctors, only 29.5% had the knowledge of various methods of final disposal of BMW. Though 98.8% of the study population was aware that improper management of BMW causes different health problems, only 76.4% knew about various types of color-coded bags for collection of BMW. All the junior doctors were trained in all these essential aspects of BMW in their undergraduate curriculum. Conclusion: Still, intensive training program and monitoring at regular time interval is needed for all staff, with special emphasis on junior doctors.
Keywords: Assessment, biomedical waste, junior doctors, segregation.