Title: Management of unused pharmaceuticals waste at governmental hospitals and homes in Gaza, Palestine: empirical insights for further actions

Authors: Mohammed I. Tabash; Mosab I. Tabash

Addresses: Faculty of Applied Medical Sciences, Al-Azhar University, Gaza, P.O. Box 1277, Palestine ' College of Business, Al Ain University, P.O. Box 64141, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates

Abstract: Unused pharmaceuticals management is highly complex for healthcare facilities. This study aimed to assess management practices of unused pharmaceuticals at governmental hospitals and homes in Gaza Strip. The study was conducted at five main hospitals in Gaza and 88 interviewed questionnaires were obtained. A survey was carried out among 371 household participants from the community at city of Gaza. The results revealed inadequate management of unused pharmaceuticals at governmental hospitals. There are limited training programs (9.1%) and absence of practical guidelines. Moreover, there is an inadequate segregation practice (33%). The only method used for treatment of hazardous waste is incinerators. Many types of unused pharmaceuticals are disposed in the landfill without any treatment (64.8%). The results from the household survey showed that more than half of the respondents have unused, leftover or expired medicines. The study highlights the need for appropriate actions and measures for safe disposal of unused pharmaceuticals.

Keywords: unused; pharmaceuticals; health; environment; household; landfill; hospitals; disposal; medicine; Gaza.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEWM.2021.114424

International Journal of Environment and Waste Management, 2021 Vol.27 No.3, pp.275 - 291

Accepted: 30 Dec 2019
Published online: 29 Jan 2021 *

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