Assessment of used female sanitary pads management
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Poor menstrual waste management practices have been associated with adverse environmental outcomes. This is because of impacts like blockage of sewage pipes, contamination of the soil, air pollution which affects the environment. The ability to reduce such environmental impacts is influenced by good management practices of these waste from purchase, use and disposal. Therefore, this research is sought to assess the management of used sanitary pads among hostels in Makerere Kikoni. This was achieved by assessing the different types of menstrual absorbents used by the female students in the hostels, the collection and storage of the used sanitary pads, disposal and their impacts to the environment. The total population of female students in fifteen randomly selected hostels was used to determine the sample size. During the study, a semi-structured questionnaire was used to collect data on the different menstrual absorbents used and measure of handling the wastes. Descriptive statistics was used to analyze the data to determine and associations among variables. The results show that over 75% of the students use disposable sanitary pads because they are easy to access but they are also a large contributor of solid wastes in the areas of Makerere Kikoni, Kawempe division, Kampala city. Information from this research will therefore be useful in guiding the waste management activities and promote possible strategies and approaches that will build capacity on solid waste management and environmental health and sustainability. For this to be successful, there is need for proper coordination among government, companies that manufacture the menstrual absorbents and support institutions to come up with strategies that aim disseminating relevant research information to schools and institutions for effective management of menstrual wastes or absorbents. Environmentally friendly menstrual absorbents should also be highly emphasized compared to those that harm the environment especially the use of reusable sanitary pads.