Remanufacture of medical equipment : a viable sustainable strategy for medical waste reduction

Coker, Akinwale and Achi, Chibueze and Idowu, Olusola and Olayinka, Olabanji and Oturu, Kingsley and Ijomah, Winifred (2021) Remanufacture of medical equipment : a viable sustainable strategy for medical waste reduction. In: International Conference on Remanufacturing, 2021-03-24 - 2021-03-25, Online.

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The lack of and need for modern quality medical equipment in developing African countries has steadily increased with increasing population, leaving these countries to depend heavily on donated medical equipment from developed countries. Most of these second-hand and old medical devices which are most often not suitable for or suited to use in developing countries have a short life span and this has resulted in the large stockpiles of abandoned medical equipment waiting to be discarded as waste. The need to adopt a more sustainable approach for the management of this ever-increasing waste stream in many hospitals in most developing countries cannot be over emphasized. The recovery and utilization of discarded medical equipment for the remanufacture of medical products stands to significantly minimize environmental pollution and the amount of waste materials to be sent to the landfills. This study focused on assessing the current management practices of medical waste and the potential for the implementation of medical equipment remanufacture in Nigeria. We will be using Nigeria's premier teaching Hospital – University College Hospital as a case study and highlighting barriers such as poor infrastructure, and safety approval standards and processes, and other key factors that could influence the implementation of remanufacture within the Nigerian context, where local knowledge and understanding of needs, context and available resources could be more effectively incorporated into designs and implementation plans for a sustainable and robust remanufacture scheme.