LOW-COST MEDICAL WASTE INCINERATORS

Here in Papua New Guinea there are no accurate records of the number of infections relating to improper waste disposal methods in our rural health facilities. But a visit to any of the countries small rural health facilities will in all probability demonstrate that waste is more often than not disposed of with little or no consideration to cross infections.  The availability of low-cost appropriately designed incinerators is a real issue faced by all health facilities in Papua New Guinea. And after reviewing what was available it seems that there are no incinerators readily available that are suitable for the small rural health facilities. Also the commercially available incinerators did not address the problem of disposing of the waste once it that been burnt in the incinerator, that is if the health facility has access to power. And while some of these incinerators deposited the burnt waste in used 200lts (44gal) drums, these drums also need to be disposed of. After reviewing the problem we were able to develop a design for a simple incinerator that not only could be made in our workshop, but would also solve the problem of what to do with the waste once it has been burnt. This design uses a cylindrical firebox (volume = 0.03 square metre) and a grate system that is able to rotate a full 90 degrees, thus allowing the burnt waste (and un-burnt sharps) to be disposed of into a 3m pit that the incinerator is mounted on. The incinerator is designed to be operated in an open space a minimum of 20m away from buildings. Incinerator installation can be done by ATprojects or the purchaser and ATprojects can help by providing a short installation training program. This training can be designed around a actual installation in a clients health facility. For more information on this training contact us. ATprojects has a simple fibreglass mould that produces a round incinerator base. For more information contact: steve@atprojects-png.org

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