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This study examines the cost effectiveness of using current treatment technologies to sanitize, disinfect, shred, and dispose of biomedical waste within the state in relation to the costs of current disposal practices in Maine. The study employs a linear programming model to determine the combination of treatment facilities, transportation options, and disposal sites to treat all waste produced in Maine at the lowest statewide cost. A least-cost solution is developed for three different scenarios. The first two scenarios assume that all treated waste must be shredded in accordance with current regulatory requirements. The third scenario assumes that regulations are changed to require only that the sharps portion of the biomedical waste stream be shredded. All scenarios assume that the treatment facilities would be located on-site at one or more hospital locations, that there are no barriers to inter-hospital shipment of waste for treatment, and that any hospital has the option to continue shipping its waste out of state.
Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station
medical wastes, waste management
Health Economics | Medicine and Health Sciences
Files, A.C., T.G. Allen, and G.K. Criner. 2002. Least-cost options for the collection, treatment, and disposal of biomedical waste in Maine. Maine Agricultural and Forest Experiment Station Technical Bulletin 184