The impact of COVID-19 pandemic in medical waste amounts: a case study from a high-populated city of Turkey

Creative Commons License

HANEDAR A., ÇİFÇİ D. İ., Zafer N., Gorgun E.

JOURNAL OF MATERIAL CYCLES AND WASTE MANAGEMENT, vol.24, no.5, pp.1760-1767, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 24 Issue: 5
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10163-022-01428-3
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, ABI/INFORM, Compendex, Environment Index, INSPEC, Pollution Abstracts, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Page Numbers: pp.1760-1767
  • Keywords: COVID-19, Medical waste, Waste amounts, Pandemic, MANAGEMENT, GENERATION
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


In this study, the amount of medical waste generated in a high-populated city in Turkey between January 2018 and August 2021 was evaluated, and the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on waste amounts and waste production rate was investigated. While a total of 79,027 kg/month of medical waste was produced in the city before COVID-19, this value reached 116,714 kg/month after COVID-19. The increase in the amount of medical waste due to the COVID-19 pandemic in the province was calculated as 48% on average. It was determined that 75% of this waste amount originates from public hospitals in the city. While the production of medical waste was 0.86 kg/bed day in the pre-COVID-19 period, this value increased to 0.96 kg/bed day in 2020 and to 1.34 kg/bed day in 2021 with the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the results obtained, the amount of medical waste reached in the province due to COVID-19 is the amount of medical waste expected to be generated in the 2040s under normal conditions. It is a very important issue in terms of public health that the capacity of waste disposal in medical waste management in cities is flexible to respond to severe epidemic conditions. Based on the information obtained within the scope of the study, changes in the amount of medical waste in a city with a dense population under pandemic conditions can be obtained based on real data and projections regarding disposal capacity can be made more realistically.