Mercury-added products management: Challenges in developing countries and lessons learned from medical facility

M. M.B. Amir Sultan, Choo Ta Goh, Peter John Peterson, Sharifa Ezat Wan Puteh, Mazlin Mokhtar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The risks of mercury use have prompted the establishment of Minamata Convention on Mercury which placed strong emphasis on management of mercury-added products. This convention aims to reduce and phase out the use, manufacturing and trade of mercury-added products including batteries, switches and non-electronic measuring devices. This commitment will cause significant impacts especially in the developing countries in designing the right approach to achieve it. This is also true for medical industry which is well known for the utilization of mercury-added devices and dental amalgam in its services but had embarked on efforts in eliminating mercury for many years. The experiences learned within a medical facility can be useful in efforts to meet this global ambition of mercury phase out. This paper aims to provide conceptual discussion on the challenges faced by developing countries and lessons learned from medical facility that can helps the formulation of appropriate approaches to manage mercury-added products. The paper adopted medical industry as a case study and used document analysis to discuss the issue. The main challenges identified for developing countries include lacks of capacity, funding, data and newer technologies. Based on analysis of previous studies, this study proposed a mercury management framework in medical facility and identified the recommended practices, namely technological application, policy instrument, capacity building and guidelines development. These identified approaches are found to have specific relationships between cost and potential impacts, hence giving flexibility for adoption based on the available resources in promoting better mercury management system.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)59-68
Number of pages10
JournalMalaysian Journal of Public Health Medicine
Volume17
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Fingerprint

Mercury
Developing Countries
Industry
Dental Amalgam
Capacity Building
Equipment and Supplies
Guidelines
Technology
Costs and Cost Analysis

Keywords

  • Developing countries
  • Medical facility
  • Mercury management
  • Mercury-added product

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this

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abstract = "The risks of mercury use have prompted the establishment of Minamata Convention on Mercury which placed strong emphasis on management of mercury-added products. This convention aims to reduce and phase out the use, manufacturing and trade of mercury-added products including batteries, switches and non-electronic measuring devices. This commitment will cause significant impacts especially in the developing countries in designing the right approach to achieve it. This is also true for medical industry which is well known for the utilization of mercury-added devices and dental amalgam in its services but had embarked on efforts in eliminating mercury for many years. The experiences learned within a medical facility can be useful in efforts to meet this global ambition of mercury phase out. This paper aims to provide conceptual discussion on the challenges faced by developing countries and lessons learned from medical facility that can helps the formulation of appropriate approaches to manage mercury-added products. The paper adopted medical industry as a case study and used document analysis to discuss the issue. The main challenges identified for developing countries include lacks of capacity, funding, data and newer technologies. Based on analysis of previous studies, this study proposed a mercury management framework in medical facility and identified the recommended practices, namely technological application, policy instrument, capacity building and guidelines development. These identified approaches are found to have specific relationships between cost and potential impacts, hence giving flexibility for adoption based on the available resources in promoting better mercury management system.",
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