The Health Ministry and the World Bank on June 12 jointly launched a
wide ranging environmental plan to treat medical waste throughout the
Under the three-phase master plan, from
2011-2015 and with a vision towards 2020, liquid and solid waste
disposed by hospitals and healthcare facilities will be processed to
ensure the environment is protected and health workers, patients and the
community are not vulnerable to pollution risks.
During the five-year period, facilities to treat medical waste,
including sewerage plants, will be built to ensure that healthcare
establishments do not pollute the environment at both central and local
By 2015, 100 percent of healthcare facilities
at central level, 70 percent at provincial level, 50 percent at
district level and 100 percent of private clinics will process their
sewerage in accordance with the national regulations and standards on
the environment, while hazardous liquid waste disposed by the remaining
will be treated initially before being piped out.
addition, by 2012, 100 percent of healthcare facilities at central and
provincial levels, 70 percent at district level and 100 percent of
private clinics will treat all solid waste in line with the national
regulations and standards on the environment.
Huy Nga, Head of the Health Environment Management Agency (HEMA), under
the Health Ministry, said that the health sector needs around 12
trillion VND (roughly 576 million USD) to carry out the plan nationwide.
According to Kari Hurt from the World Bank, the plan
shows the Vietnamese Government’s commitment to managing medical waste
properly and providing direct support to health workers, patients and
It is estimated that around 350 tonnes
of solid waste, including about 40 tonnes of hazardous waste, and
150,000 cu.m of sewerage are discharged every single day.
By 2015, these volumes are expected to rise to 600 tonnes of solid waste and 300,000 cu.m of sewerage.
More than 90 percent of hospitals classify their solid waste and have
it removed every day. However, this is not always carried out in line
with the national regulations.
Only 73.3 percent of
hospitals incinerate their solid waste, while the remainder still use
out of date methods such as open air burning or landfill.
Around 74 percent of hospitals at central level, 40 percent at
provincial levels and 27 percent at district level have their own
sewerage treatment plants, but most of them fail to meet the national
regulations and standards on environment.
A number of
those attending the plan’s launching ceremony in Hanoi proposed a
wide range of solutions to deal with medical waste, especially hazardous
The Ministry of Science and Technology is
currently working on a project to apply and transfer modern,
eco-friendly technologies when treating waste, which suit Vietnam ’s
Along with the plan to
treat waste during 2011-2015, a six year project to support the
management of medical waste using WB loans will also being carried out.-VNA