BORNO AF-NSHIP TRAINS HEALTH WORKERS ON WASTE MANAGEMENT

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BY INUSA NDAHI, MAIDUGURI
Borno State Primary Health Care Development Agency (BOSPHCDA) and the Additional Financing-Nigeria State Health Investment Project (AF-NSHIP), a World Bank assisted project has organised a weeklong Training on Waste Management for contracted General Hospitals, Primary Health Care Facilities and Focal Persons drawn from 10 Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the state.
The exercise which commenced on Tuesday 12 March 2019 at Emerald Royal Hill Top Hotel, Gombe State, will be in three batches, and is expected to end on Sunday 20 March 2019.
Facilitators for the training were drawn from the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, (NPHCDA), Project Implementation Unit (PIU) of NSHIP, Borno State Primary Health Care Development Agency (BOSPHCDA), Ministries of Health and Environment and Borno State Action Committee on HIV/Aids, (BOSACA).
Declaring the workshop opened, the Executive Director of BOSPHCDA, Dr. Sule Meleh, represented by the Training Lead, Mallam Yerwama Tijjani thanked Dr. Meleh and the State Coordinator of Project Implementation Unit (PIU), Mrs. Habiba Saidu for giving him the opportunity and support towards organizing successful training programme.
He said, sustainable management of Healthcare Waste (HCW) has continued to generate increasing public concern due to the health problems associated with exposure of human beings, clients or animals to potentially hazardous waste arising from healthcare, hence, the need to train all stakeholders on appropriate ways of disposing waste in the society.
He said workers in the contracted Primary Health Care facilities and General Hospitals from Askira-Uba, Hawul and Kaga Local Government Areas fell under the First Batch category training that commenced on Tuesday 12 March, followed by Biu, Shani and Kwaya Kusar scheduled to commence on Thursday 15 to Sunday 18 while Maiduguri Metropolitan Council (MMC), Jere, Magumeri and Bayo which are slated in the Third Batch category would have theirs between 17 and 20 March.
Tijjani noted that a study conducted on waste management practices conducted during the preparation of the Nigeria: HIV/AIDs Medical Waste Management Plan (2008) revealed that systems for Health Care Waste Management (HCWM) are poorly developed at the Health Facility level due to lack of Waste generation Data, inadequate waste treatment and disposal, lack of code of conduct and technical guidelines for proper waste management, resulting in poor practices at facilities, dumpsites and inadequate knowledge among health workers and community members.
To this end, he said, the motive of organising this training on waste management by Borno AF-NSHIP is to address these challenges in accordance with Performance Bases Financing (PBF) approaches and guidelines.
The Training Lead therefore urged all participants to use the opportunity to be derived in the weeklong training to ensure clean and safety environment in health facilities and communities for healthy living.
The Technical Adviser (TA) NSHIP/PBF for Borno and Yobe state, Mr. Nji Valery Che, in an interview said, “The large component of healthcare waste which is classified as the general waste poses harm or risk to the general public and environment.
Che said: “This training is very important and timely, because when a Baseline Assessment on Waste Management were conducted recently in all the contracted facilities and General Hospitals, it was observed that Focal Persons and Health Workers do not really manage waste appropriately, meaning that it contradicts World Bank’s and National Primary Health Care Development Agency’s (NPHCDA’s) standard which takes waste management seriously.
“So, it is for this reason that we organize this particular training, and at the end of the exercise, we expect that Facility Managers, Focal Persons and Participants should be able to implement the appropriate methods of managing waste and Save Lives,” stated.
Mr. Peter Adamu who is the NPHCDA Focal Person in the state, however, pointed out that “it is the smaller hazardous waste component such as used sharp objects, chemicals, sterilization, toxic exposure to pharmaceutical products/drugs, antibiotics and cytotoxic materials released into the surrounding environment, that need to be properly managed so that the risks from exposure to known hazards can be minimized.”
Ahmed Awual, Technical Assistant of PBF said uncontrolled discharges of sewage from healthcare facilities, inadequate incineration or incineration of unsuitable materials which results in the release of pollutants into the air are potential sources of infection.
PIU/ PBF Data Manager, Victor Adeyemi said, the exercise will also contribute in Data management on HCWM, as all Data’s relating to it would be uploaded for research and documentation.
In her presentation, Mrs. Comfort Dave-Diamond who is from the NPHCDA, dealt extensively on impact, legal and regulatory framework, waste minimization, handling/storage and general overview on HCWM system.
The participants included HCWM Focal Persons, Certified Supervisors, Medical Directors, Chief Nursing Officers, PHC Facility Managers, Chief of Pharmacists, Head of Laboratories, Lab Scientists/Technicians, Accident and Emergency, Infection Control Officers, Radiologists, Senior Nursing Officers and HCWM Focal Persons.
Most of the participants in an interview thanked the organisers of the training. They pledged to make proper use of the knowledge derived from the training and impact positively on the lives of clients in the state.

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