Assessment of Wastewater and Microbiological Characteristics from Selected Hospitals in Umuahia Metropolis
There is an increasing universal awareness of environmental problems arising as a result of COVID- 19 pandemic and pollution especially in Nigeria. Among the source of this problem is effluent discharge from industries, particularly hospitals in arable farmlands and environs. Two outstanding hospital were purposively selected; Madonna Catholic Hospital and Abia Specialist Hospital in Umuahia, Abia State. Their wastewater samples were collected from three different wards; maternity, general private, and general out-patients department (GOPD) wards. Results obtained show significant variation in physiochemical properties in some wards and heavy metals across all wards. Seven bacteria species; Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Klesbsiella pneumonia, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Proteus vulgaris, Bacteriod sp and Streptococcus pyogenes and one fungi specie- Candida albican were recorded from the samples. The bacterial load in Madonna ranged from 209.04 to 232.95cfu/ml in January, February, and March each and was statistically the same in the three wards (p>0.05). Fungi load ranged from 1.58 to 2.35cfu/ml in January, February, and March each and also significantly different at (p>0.05). The frequency of microbial characteristics isolated in the two hospital wastewater ranged from 33 to 100% with 100% of Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli in all the wards, while other species varied significantly between 67 and 33% each. The results of the isolated bacteria from hospital wastewater showed resistivity to the tested antibiotics, and as therapeutic agents. Therefore, results call for need for urgent attention to be given to the discharge of wastewater from hospitals to ensure that food production around the environment is not contaminated.
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