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Hospital waste – a long-term challenge

In case of highly contagious diseases (e.g. Ebola virus disease), inadequate handling of hospital waste represents an additional but avoidable risk of infection. In order to ensure the safe disposal of large quantities of waste (e.g. used Personal Protective Equipment), EFFO has implemented and repeatedly evaluated the following measures to improve infection control on a sustainable basis:


  1. Financing the construction of 16 waste incinerators Due to structural defects and operating errors, proper waste incineration was initially not possible.
  2. Reworking the incinerators with the help of local experts (in cooperation with technicians without borders e.V.). The post-combustion in the second chamber, which then worked, significantly reduced the development of smoke.
  3. Implementing a two-day pilot-training for health and cleaning personnel. Main topics were the necessity of waste separation, construction of the incinerator, steps of incineration and the principle of post-combustion.
  4. Practical instruction and execution of the incineration in the own working environment of the respective personnel.

Overall, the training was evaluated very positively by all participants. The positive results of the pre- and post-tests with regard to learning progress coincided with the participants' feedback that they had learned a great deal both practically and theoretically.


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The principle of the two chambers is understood with help of a modell of the incinerator. © RKI The principle of the two chambers is understood with help of a modell of the incinerator.

Further improvements and extensions to the incinerators are to be carried out (e.g. construction of ash pits, intermediate waste storage) and further training measures are to be organised for health station personnel, including packaging, intermediate storage and transport.

Date: 01.09.2019





Burk­i­na Fa­so






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