Biomedical waste or also known as hospital waste is any waste that is both hazardous and infectious. It can be either in a liquid form such as blood and body fluids or in a solid-state such as sharps (needles, used syringes, broken ampules) and packaging, used bandages, and even human body tissue.

Improper biomedical waste management poses a lot of health risks to both hospital staff and non-employees. To dispose of biomedical waste properly, is essential in following a structured protocol that includes segregating waste into correct categories, using appropriate containers, and adhering to local and national regulations. That’s why many organizations like US EPA and OSHA strictly impose proper waste management protocols. But aside from health risks, there are other reasons why these organizations should make sure their bio waste is handled correctly. 

Benefits of Proper Biomedical Waste Handling 

We all heard that improper biomedical waste poses many health risks, but we tend not to see the benefits of properly doing it. Also, it isn’t emphasized enough that proper biomedical waste handling can reduce potential problems such as the following.

Reduction In the Occurrence Of Fatal Diseases

Illnesses and diseases such as HIV/AIDS, sepsis, and other diseases transmitted by infectious medical equipment can be curtailed if hospitals and other healthcare organizations know the proper bio waste disposal procedure. There should be proper training in hospital waste management to maintain such practice in an organization such as hospitals, testing centers, laboratories, and even clinics both for humans and animals.

Prevents Illegal Trading of Used Medical Tools

One of the alarming concerns that are being mitigated by properly handling hospital waste is the illegal trading of used medical equipment and tools. This case is very popular as using disposed syringes is common news.

The health risks that come in using syringes and needles are the primary causes of widespread contraction of diseases. Used syringes and needles are contaminated with an unknown substance, and it may lead to the contraction of different diseases once used again.

Low Injury Reports

When healthcare organizations follow and practice proper health waste management, then it is highly expected that there will be low injury reports of health staff incurring injuries at the workplace.

In the US alone, healthcare personnel experience 300,000 needlestick and other sharps-related injuries every year. That rate is highly concerning as needlestick injuries can expose you to various health cases. But with proper waste handling and management, this is being taken care of, and gradually reports are decreased.

How To Properly Dispose of Biomedical Waste?

Now that we have acknowledged the benefits of proper hospital waste management let us learn to dispose of them correctly. Healthcare organizations should be concerned about treating their patients, but they are also responsible for making sure that they’re not the ones who caused it. And it starts in practice to dispose of biomedical waste properly.

Classification of Biomedical Waste and Segregation

The very first step to properly dispose of biomedical waste is to know their classification, that way; you’d know how to do their proper segregation as well. Proper waste segregation is the fundamental step in handling biomedical waste. Once you know how to properly segregate the waste, the rest of the procedure can be done quickly.

Proper Disposal Procedure

There are various disposal procedures for healthcare waste. Sometimes, it depends on its classification as other waste needs a special disposal treatment because their by-products have adverse effects.

The perfect example of this is burning radioactive materials. Burning radioactive materials is not the proper disposal procedure as the by-product of it can cause health risks such as inhaling the smoke of a burned radioactive material.

There is six proper hospital waste disposal procedure:

1. Incineration. Incinerating hospital waste includes the combustion of substances. Hospitals used a specialized incinerator during this procedure, which they commonly called hospital/medical/infectious waste incinerators (HMIWIs). A slow and controlled burning of medical waste is done using HMIWIs.

2. Autoclaves. A treatment that uses heat, steaming, and moisture to properly dispose and kill microorganisms.

3. Mechanical/Chemical Disinfection. The best treatment for liquid base biowaste. Use of chemical disinfection to kill microorganisms that are harmful once exposed.

4. Microwave. Another treatment of waste that has water substance. Microwave treatment works directly to treat liquid medical waste.

5. Irradiation. Irradiation disinfects waste by exposing it to gamma rays that are fatal to bacteria. This treatment is best in killing infectious pathogens found in water waste.

6. Vitrification. The process of transformation of a substance into a glass. When turned into an off-gas or vitrified waste, pathogens and combustible material can be put in a landfill.


Hospitals and other healthcare organizations should be well-trained, well-informed, and knowledgeable about the importance of proper biomedical waste management.

There are various conflict diseases and fatal injuries caused by improper hospital waste management, and it can only be mitigated when the staff knows the proper disposal procedure. And it starts when they understand the importance of conducting proper biowaste management.