Senegal have ratified international treaties and developed legal frameworks, but Dakar continue to lack efficient chain for biomedical wastes disposal with lack of financial resources and weak law enforcement as key hindrances.

For the attention of: Administrative divisions of the Dakar region and  national government of Senegal and similar authorities for other settlements with similar biomedical wastes contexts.

The problem: The rapid growth of population in Dakar, the Senegalese Capital, has led to an increase in the number of healthcare facilities in the city, with considerable increase in biomedical waste generation. This poses a huge challenge to the already burdened city’s waste management system.

What we did and why: We triangulated data from document analysis and relevant study reports to document the historic evolution of the legal frameworks that guide biomedical waste management in Senegal, the biomedical management practices in Dakar, and its health and environmental impacts. Building on the accumulated evidence, we proposed policy and program options towards improving biomedical waste management in Dakar city and Senegal in general.

What we found: Dakar’s critical challenge of biomedical waste management is linked to hosting about 80 percent of Senegal’s economic and industrial activities and the production of about 2000 tons of diverse solid and biomedical wastes. Despite ratified international agreements and relevant laws and regulations at national and local levels, full implementation of professional biomedical management in Dakar in proper incineration and landfills continue to lag and current practices are detrimental to population health and the environment.

Implications for city policy and practice: The paper links the minimal management of biomedical waste in particular and solid waste management in general in Dakar to lack of financial resources and weak law enforcement. Significant investment required for effective and proper biomedical waste management in the city to address environmental contamination, human exposure and associated loss to health were articulated and highlighted..

Links to other resources and support: Two papers from Urban Africa Risk Knowledge (Urban ARK)

Improving solid waste management practices and addressing associated health risks in Dakar, Senegal

Solid Waste Management and Risks to Health in Urban Africa: A Study of Dakar City, Senegal

Full research article: Biomedical waste management in Dakar, Senegal: legal framework, health and environment issues; policy and program options

Authors: Cheikh Dieng, Blessing Mberu (@BMberuAPHRC), Zacharie Dimbuene, Cheikh Faye, Dickson Amugsi, and Isabella Aboderin,

Editor: Marcus Grant (@MarcusxGrant)