Ebola is a messy disease. Patient care, even in hospital isolation, produces large quantities of contaminated waste … linens, towels, gowns, masks, gloves and sharps … that many hospitals are not equipped to dispose on site. In non-hospital settings, symptomatic patients contaminate virtually everything they contact including porous materials, such as furniture and carpets, which cannot be decontaminated.
Medical authorities worry about the public health threat posed by storage of Ebola-contaminated waste; homeland security authorities worry about its theft and use by terrorists. Issues of liability and public relations are prominent concerns for all entities in the service chain. Best practices and common sense require prompt removal of accumulated waste to incineration or autoclave facilities. Continue Reading