Medical is derived from the word medicine which stands for the study and practice of medicine. It involves the study, act of researching on how to treat illnesses in human and animals. Medicine involves the use of medicine, injections, gloves, bandages and other equipment. Most of this equipment cannot be recycled and reused therefore it is disposed of. They give rise to medicine waste. This medicine waste must be disposed of carefully to prevent the spreading of infections and keep the environment clean. Some of the medicine waste can be also be recycled for reuse. Some organizations called medicine waste disposal companies provide specialized services in the treatment and disposal of medicine waste. Below are methods of treating and throwing away medicine waste.
Use of chemical is the first medicine waste treatment method. Chemical treatment of medicine waste involves the mixing of medicine waste and chemicals so as to kill the bacteria and other microorganisms. Chemicals such as calcium oxide and chlorine are used. During the chemical treatment process, hazardous gases are given out, therefore, a person should take all the necessary measures such as wearing protective clothing. Chemical treatment of medicine waste is an on-site method. It is mostly carried out in the health facilities.
The second method is burying or land disposal. Decontaminated medicine waste and the treated waste can be buried on the ground or thrown away on the land surface where it can be burnt. Medicine waste which lacks any other method of disposal can be disposed on land or buried. Sanitary landfill is used to prevent contamination of water and soil in cases where decontamination of medicine waste is impossible. Injection wells are used in disposing of risky liquid medicine waste. This waste is disposed of in special and restricted areas which are only accessed by the authorized and professional people.
The third method of medicine waste treatment is autoclaving. It involves subjecting medicine waste to high temperatures in special furnaces so as to kill all diseases causing microorganisms. A special furnace is used in subjecting the medicine waste to high temperatures. There are different sizes of autoclaving equipment and one should purchase the one that best suits him.
The fourth method of medicine waste treatment is irradiation. Irradiation involves the use of radiation rays such as gamma rays to sterilize medicine waste.
Use of microwaves is also used in treating medicine waste. The process of microwave treatment is like the irradiation process but microwaves are subjected to moist medicine waste. In order to facilitate microwave treatment, water can be added to the dry medicine waste.
The above are the major methods of medicine waste disposal and treatment.