Medical waste management and environmental assessment in the Rio University Hospital, Western Greece

Sustainable Chemistry and Pharmacy

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At this study a multi-criteria model was developed to examine the available procedures, techniques and methods
of handling infectious waste in the large healthcare unit of University Regional General Hospital of Patras,
Western Greece. Particularly, this study examined the: a) current legislation and Directives issued for medical
waste management at Greece and among the other EU-members, b) contribution of healthcare wastes (HCW)
generation rate on social and economic parameters in selected European countries, c) available procedures,
techniques, and methods upon the disposal of infectious wastes at the healthcare studied, and, d) propositions
for integrated management of such hazardous wastes. Specifically, the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP)
methodology was applied under pair wise comparison matrices in two stages: 1) the scale factors and the indicators, and 2) the criteria and their sub–criteria. The assessment of these pair wise matrices included the
indicators and the sub–criteria. Subsequently, two pair wise comparison matrices, upon a) the “Fulfillment of
environmental objectives” indicator and b) the “Energy consumption” sub criterion, were denoted. The AHP
methodology yielded good results; however there is still space of improving the environmental performance. The
normalized relative weights obtained for the criteria and sub criteria motivated specific actions that have to be
handled. Particularly, the results indicated a very good value in environmental management criteria due the
values obtained for the commitment towards the environmental policy standards and the waste management
procedures. However, further improvements on staff awareness (such as development programs to enhance
sensitivity) and more green purchasing suppliers, should be further addressed.

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