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Togo has its national strategic plan for medical wastes management

Medical wastes management becomes serious concern for human health and Togo environment. These wastes containing stains blood, syringes, different types of bandages, needles etc. are sometimes spread in health centers many days before been picked up or sometimes in garbage dumps, threatening human health or the environment. For the purpose, two days validation workshop for national strategic plan for medical wastes management was organized in Kpalimé.

From November 17 to 18, 2016, the Ministry of Health and social security organized in Kpalimé (South-Togo) a validation workshop for strategic plan concerning medical wastes management in Togo. The main objective of this workshop was to contribute to risk reduction of medical wastes and environmental protection in Togo.

According to the law n° 2008/005 of May 30, 2008, relative to environmental framework law: «wastes mean any residue from process of production, transformation or use any substance, material, product or generally any movable asset which is abandoned or intended to be abandoned by its owner ». There are many sources of medical wastes production in Togo. The first one is medical units’ notably public hospitals, semi public and private health clinics, health care centers and clinics, clinical and epidemiological laboratory, institute and scientific research centers (human and veterinary). The second sources of medical wastes production are health units: doctors’ offices, acupuncture centers, drugstores, and aesthetic offices. Two types of medical wastes are produced in Togo: household wastes representing 80 to 85% of the whole wastes produced in health centers; dangerous wastes composed of sharps wastes (syringes needles, surgical blades); anatomical parts (placenta, exeresis products), infected fungibles (bandages) or chemical, pharmaceutical and radioactive products. These wastes represent 15 to 20% of the whole wastes produced in health centers.

This strategic plan 2016-2020 which is validated by all stakeholders is built around four main lines: (i) capacity building for adequate communication management of medical wastes, (ii) capacity building for institutional and legal framework for medical wastes management, (iii) capacity building of stakeholders and development of initiatives for medical wastes management and finally (iv) capacity building for the coordination and follow up.

According to Mr. Esso-Simna WALLA, the head of environmental department at ANCE-Togo, his NGO ANCE-Togo play a leading role in water and sanitation sector in Togo and the NGO is expecting to support Togo government for the implementation of the strategic plan through capacity building of the stakeholders, the promotion of sustainable incinerators at low cost and the mainstreaming of sustainability technologies.

For this purpose, he reminds that the implementation of districts hospital equipment program of conventional incinerators and other medical wastes processing as well as hospital wastewater processing require rigorous study in addition, environmental and social impact should be taken into account.

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