The Ministry of Health (MoH) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) co-organised a national teleconference in Hanoi on August 16 on the deployment of measures to minimise the use of plastic waste in the health sector.
Addressing the event, Minister of Health Nguyen Thi Kim Tien underlined that nylon bags and disposable plastic products could be replaced by safe and environmentally-friendly materials.
According to local hospitals, about 5 percent of medical waste is plastic. However, in the field, disposable plastic products like syringes, gloves and sample bottles have significantly contributed to ensure safety and hygiene standards.
The health minister asked health facilities nationwide to work to raise awareness and change the habit of using plastic bags and disposable plastic products by health workers, patients and their caretakers.
Furthermore, the facilities are required to design goals, plans, and roadmaps for the task and review sources, amounts and types of plastic waste. They are also advised to conduct research and apply measures to minimise plastic waste in the health sector and arrange forces to implement the plans.
At the teleconference, leaders of the MoH and health units across the country inked a document pledging to reduce plastic waste in the sector.