Chinese embassy, UNDP, DOH hand over autoclaves to improve healthcare waste management

December 21, 2022

The UNDP-GDF Healthcare Waste Management Response Project team unveils one of two autoclaves. (From L-R) Engr. Jean Borromeo, DENR, UNDP Philippines Deputy Resident Representative Edwine Carrie, DOH OIC Usec. Maria Rosario Vergeire, Chinese Embassy to the Philippines Minister Councilor Yang Guoliang, Pasig City Vice Mayor Robert Vincent Jude B. Jaworski Jr., DJNRMH Medical Chief Dr. Alfonso H. Famaran Jr.


CALOOCAN CITY, Philippines – The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the Philippines recently handed over two autoclaves to Dr. Jose N. Rodriguez Memorial Hospital and Sanitarium and the Pasig City General Hospital through the support of China’s Global Development and South-South Cooperation Fund (GDF) operated by China International Development Cooperation Agency (CIDCA) and in cooperation with the Department of Health.

Since the declaration of COVID-19 as a pandemic by the World Health Organization in March 2020, the detrimental economic, societal, and environmental impacts have been significant. In Asia and the Pacific, the countries’ health systems are buckling after almost three years of battling the disease. To help build a more resilient healthcare system, the autoclaves will be put into use to sustainably manage healthcare waste.

In his speech, Mr. Edwine Carrié, UNDP Philippines Deputy Resident Representative, said that the handover of the autoclave “marks the celebration of new beginnings towards an improved health care waste management” for the Pasig City General Hospital and Dr. Jose N. Rodriguez Memorial Hospital and Sanitarium, and “expands the partnership between the Department of Health, our friends from the Chinese Embassy, and UNDP”. He also hoped that the equipment would “contribute to a safer and more sustainable healthcare waste management system that will benefit health workers and patients, women and men, including children and the youth.”

To be led by UNDP and in partnership with the Department of Health (DOH), the UNDP-GDF Healthcare Waste Management Response Project helps strengthen the Philippine healthcare system. The project extends technical support to the government in combating the COVID-19 pandemic through a sustainable healthcare waste management system to help protect the health of the exposed population and prevent environmental pollution.

Through the UNDP-GDF Healthcare Waste Management Response Project, we aim to strengthen public health cooperation with other developing countries, especially in the Philippines,” said Minister Councilor Yang Guoliang of the Chinese Embassy in the Philippines.

Apart from the provision of appropriate medical waste treatment facilities to partner hospitals, training on waste management, with focus on waste characterization and audit, to also include a digital waste registry system, will be given to healthcare professionals, local government staff and others that carry out essential services.

DOH Officer-in-Charge Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire emphasized the need to update the current healthcare waste management practices in the Philippines as the country makes its way towards pandemic recovery. “We recognize that there is more work that needs to be done in the field of healthcare waste management. This includes initiatives that promote a safe and sustainable healthcare waste management system, the development of a mechanism to monitor the implementation of healthcare waste management standards and guidelines, including regular updates to ensure that the latest technologies are scoped, incorporated, and adopted into our local context,” she said.  

Corresponding equipment and operation training sessions will be provided to both medical and non-medical hospital staff. In addition, medical waste characterization, a management study, and the development of a long-term resilience plan will support the Philippine Government in crafting strategic interventions based on evidence. ##