Modern Technology for Handling 

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Biomedical waste, often known as hospital waste, is any sort of waste created during the diagnosis, treatment (therapy, surgery, medication, etc.), or immunisation of humans or animals, medical research activities, or manufacturing and testing biologicals. It requires a careful approach and must be disposed of under stringent criteria, because it is, has the potential to, and is thought to be infectious. As such, it’s evident who produces the vast bulk of the garbage – hospitals, health clinics, doctor’s offices, nursing homes, research laboratories, morgues, and funeral homes, etc. With that, let’s delve straight into modern technology for treating biological waste.

Reduced biomedical waste

Even if it hasn’t seen many significant technological advances over the years, reducing the production of biomedical waste is crucial for a clean future. The main challenge is that even in the absence of warning indications or contrary experience, staff must assume that the waste is contagious. Simply put, the dangers of contamination are too great. To combat this, facilities are implementing automated or smart inventory systems that make use of bar codes, RFID chips, QR codes, and other forms of identification. Additionally, they are making investments in enhanced recycling systems, particularly for plastic, glass, and stainless steel, as well as in portable and on-site cleaning and disinfection equipment.

Sorting biomedical waste

The next example of contemporary technology for managing biological waste is waste segregation systems. Identification, quantification, and appropriate categorization are handled by the system. Waste can have severe effects on nature, people, and animals if it isn’t used properly or at all. Inadequately kept trash not only poses a high danger of spreading diseases to people, including HIV, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C, but it can also spread a variety of bacteria, viruses, chemicals, and radioactive materials. The main carriers of the disease, in addition to people, are strays, birds, and rodents. In addition to digital solutions for time management, organising, and shipping, technology also contributes to the preservation, recycling, and reuse of storage containers.

How is medical waste differentiated?

The waste collection containers have been color-coded for various waste categories for decades (red, yellow, blue, white/transparent, and black). Their appearance hasn’t changed much, but thanks to the advantages of globalisation, their durability, leak-proofing, and production costs have all improved. Several instances include:

tamper-resistant containers (sharps)

Ziploc bags or strong plastic bags (solids, liquids, animal anatomic parts, smaller medical equipment)
Biological drums (larger anatomical parts)
Biohazard containers (solids, cell cultures, dull medical equipment, supplies)
Fume ducts (toxic, chemical, and air-polluting waste)

Waste management (treatment)

The goal of treating biomedical waste is to dispose of it in a cost-effective, safe, and safe manner. Naturally, different waste types call for different approaches, and for some waste types, eradication starts right away. But it always comes to an end elsewhere. Here are a few cutting-edge technological approaches to handling and destroying biomedical waste:


In order to destroy waste, autoclaving—more specifically, steam sterilization—uses intensely hot, high-pressure steam that is kept active for a predetermined period of time. Professionals frequently shred, mill, and crush waste in advance to increase efficiency. In this manner, the steam can virtually eliminate all microorganisms. It can therefore be used for almost all waste types, with the exception of anatomical, pharmaceutical, and chemical waste. It is quick, reasonably priced, and does not endanger people’s health or the environment. The amount of waste, which ends up on a landfill alongside other waste, is not decreased, though.

Chemical sterilisation

Two types of chemical disinfection are ones that most people are familiar with. The first is bleach, which is only used in small amounts in liquids and waste and is applied in solutions of 1% to 10%. The other is chlorine, which is added to drinking water and pool water. Machines use alkali disinfectants like calcium oxide, sodium hydroxide, lye, and quicklime for larger, more complex waste. It is sufficient for hospitals and non-anatomic waste but insufficient for some chemical and pharmaceutical waste as well as anatomic waste. Additionally, the sterilising agent ozone gas damages our lungs, and alkalis are extremely corrosive to both the skin and the lungs.


The most widely used technique for getting rid of all biological or medical waste and up to 99% of microorganisms was incinerating. Incinerators are devices that use intense heat to “cremate” waste, leaving only ash, soot, and slag behind, as the name implies. The machine is very expensive to build and run even though it is very effective. Additionally, it releases fumes, ash, toxic gases, odours, and, in the event of a malfunction, extremely hot exhaust air into the atmosphere. Additionally, cytotoxic, waste, and thermally resistant chemicals cannot be eliminated by it.


The wavelength and frequency of the most common microwave generators (2+) are 12.24 cm and 2450 MHz, respectively. To dispose of it, they combine the infectious elements’ heat conduction with the quickly heated liquid in the waste. Waste is typically first shred and then humidified to increase process efficiency. Operators can place the waste in a typical waste stream because it is safe at the end. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work on metal and has a high operating and investment cost. Additionally, it is not widely accepted because it is unclear what the long-term risks of microwaves are. Experts are working on new technologies, one of which uses electron beams, to address those issues.


The primary function of shredding, which we’ve mentioned a few times, is to serve as a foundation for other techniques. The waste is cut into tiny pieces by two horizontal and vertical knife blocks, which also increases the surface area in contact with the disinfectant and reduces the volume by between 70% and 80%. Additionally, it renders animal and human body parts invisible, eliminating the possibility of negative visual effects.


When no other biomedical waste handling technology works, inertization is the last resort. Additionally, experts in the field use it when the residues of other methods, particularly incineration ash, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals, pose a risk to the environment or contain a significant amount of metal. In essence, they create homogenous masses by crushing biomedical waste, then combine it with water, cement, and lime to create blocks, which are typically 1 cubic metre (35.3 cubic feet) in size. The staff can sort the resulting mass with municipal waste while it is still liquid. As an alternative, they could hold off on moving it to a regular landfill until it has had time to harden. This process is simple, low-cost, and uses a centuries-old recipe without the need for specialised tools or knowledge.

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