Business Outlook for Medical Waste Management


Medical waste management is defined as the process of handling the waste materials generated by healthcare institutions or related entities. These waste items are generated during diagnosis, treatment, and immunization processes and are considered infectious and lethal. It becomes imperative to choose the correct course of action to manage the waste in the most eco-friendly and optimum manner. Generally, this waste is treated on-site or off-site. The off-site option involves more handling costs but at the same time provides the advantage to treat waste in an isolated location to avoid infection and pollution. The drivers for the medical waste management sector can be studied using Global Market Database. The cloud-based market research tool studies the shift in line with changing market trends.

Service Branches:

The services offered by this market involve different stages of the entire process. Few players in the global market provide holistic waste management options, whereas small & medium players offer restricted services. According to the market database, the general type of vertical involves the collection, transportation, and storage of medical waste at a different location. The pickups are well-timed and healthcare institutes need to amalgamate the waste every day for quick disposal.

Treatment & disposal service type has required skilled expertise to treat the waste appropriately. This service type obtains the waste material from the general service provider and treats the waste with a variety of options. The vertical involves strict regulatory mechanisms and the need to treat the waste with eco-friendly options. The recycling vertical is transformative and innovative. They make use of sophisticated equipment to convert the medical waste into recyclable parts or to use it in different applications. Market research tools state that they are highly environment friendly and have attracted increased attention from the public & private sectors.


Treatment & Disposal Process:

The treatment and disposal process is highly dependent on the type of waste being delivered to the treatment site. According to the market database, Medical waste is broadly classified into two parts, non-hazardous and hazardous. The non-hazardous type has contributed significantly to the market as hospitals and clinics generate the maximum waste of this kind. According to the WHO, health care market analysis report for waste management, 2018, 85% of Biomedical Waste (BMW) is generated by non-hazardous waste and the rest by the hazardous waste type.

Treatment can be carried out in the following ways, incineration, autoclaving, chemical treatment, and other types. The incineration type has attracted greater attention due to the easy process. The process also generated harmful gases which have led to an increased amount of air pollution. Government bodies have drafted strict policies to make the shift towards more environment-friendly methods. 

Autoclaving is a thermal process at low temperatures where waste is subjected to pressurized steam for a sufficient length of time to be disinfected. The process is environmentally friendly but requires a high amount of electricity. Extreme concentration of chemical treatment is carried out on hazardous waste to remove toxicity.

Growth Catalysts:

Greater public awareness and improved government initiatives to provide robust disposal mechanisms have contributed towards an optimistic business outlook. According to a  market research report by WHO in 2018, over 16 billion injections were administered globally. This has allowed us to welcome more innovative treatment & disposal processes. COVID-19 has increased the need to employ medical waste management practices. Market database states that due to a greater number of patients worldwide, the waste generated by patients also increased exponentially. The medical waste generated includes syringes, needles, swabs, infectious waste, personal protection equipment (PPE), pathological waste, and others. The use of waste management across the healthcare module can also be examined using Global Market Database.

Increased focus on R&D activities to provide efficient mechanisms for waste collection and disposal. The drivers, restraints, and challenges associated with this sector can also be studied through Global Market Database. The market intelligence platform studies the industrial dynamics for a given sector.

Proper markings and labeling are required to be done by the medical institutes to improve the speed of disposal. Integrated use of technology such as barcode systems to track and collect waste. Integrated trackers and sensors are integrated for easy communication. According to the market database, treatment processes have also shifted towards green practices which have led to more innovative techniques. Such practices are expected to drive business recovery in this market due to lesser pollution.

Several organizations and institutions are established to spread awareness about the proper disposal of medical waste. For instance, International Solid Waste Association is an international network of waste treatment and management experts. They transfer data to improve modern waste management practices. The organization is active in more than 20 countries.

The North American Region:

According to Market research tools, this region has experienced a greater share in the medical waste management market. This is due to the well-established healthcare module and waste management processes. The region has stringent policies in place to tackle waste and has allowed quality treatment processes to be adopted by various market players.

The region has experienced a great number of COVID-19 cases which has led to a greater number of pharmaceutical excesses being produced. Centre for Disease Control framed guidelines in June 2020, which has stated that medical waste generated from COVID-19 is to be treated in the same way as regular pharmaceutical waste. The business outlook and business recovery associated with the impacts of COVID-19 for this sector can also be studied using market research tools.


APAC Region Analysis:

The Asia-Pacific region is expected to be the fastest-growing as the market is still largely underpenetrated. According to the market database, the constant government investment to establish robust healthcare infrastructure is expected to drive business recovery in this region. A large number of medical wastes was generated in this region due to greater population density. According to Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), India generated over 18,000 tonnes of COVID-19 related bio-medical wastes between June & September 2020. The growth dynamics and the competitive mapping for APAC as compared to global markets can also be analyzed using Global Market Database. The market research tool provides free market data for the first five GMD logins.


Greater awareness among the general population has also contributed towards a positive business outlook for waste management. For instance, throughout June and early July, WHO along with the Ministry of Environment & Forestry (MOEF) conducted numerous webinars. These webinars were aimed to share current policies and practices on water, sanitization, and hygiene (WASH). India also employed the use of barcode systems for scientific management of bio-medical waste in different states for the year 2020.

Europe Region Point of View:

According to the market database, the region has contributed significantly to foster innovative waste management systems. The regulatory bodies framed different guidelines due to COVID-19. Many countries in this region experienced a greater number of COVID-19 cases which led to an increased volume of medical waste. According to a market research report in 2020, there was an increase of 40-50% of medicinal wastes being generated in the most affected parts of the region such as France.

The European Commission also reported a 300% increase in illegal waste disposal during the lockdown period in 2020. The body issued guidelines for proper waste management and treatment processes to be followed across the region. Europe has also adopted a zero-waste policy. This policy is focused on the conservation of all resources, responsible consumption, and disposal. The aim is to reduce air, land, and water pollution caused by the treatment of wastes and adopt more environmentally friendly practices.