Two-year survey of specific hospital wastewater treatment and its impact on pharmaceutical discharges
- 368 Downloads
It is well known that pharmaceuticals are not completely removed by conventional activated sludge wastewater treatment plants. Hospital effluents are of major concern, as they present high concentrations of pharmaceutically active compounds. Despite this, these specific effluents are usually co-treated with domestic wastewaters. Separate treatment has been recommended. However, there is a lack of information concerning the efficiency of separate hospital wastewater treatment by activated sludge, especially on the removal of pharmaceuticals. In this context, this article presents the results of a 2-year monitoring of conventional parameters, surfactants, gadolinium, and 13 pharmaceuticals on the specific study site SIPIBEL. This site allows the characterization of urban and hospital wastewaters and their separate treatment using the same process. Flow proportional sampling, solid-phase extraction, and liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry were used in order to obtain accurate data and limits of quantification consistent with ultra-trace detection. Thanks to these consolidated data, an in-depth characterization of urban and hospital wastewaters was realized, as well as a comparison of treatment efficiency between both effluents. Higher concentrations of organic carbon, AOX, phosphates, gadolinium, paracetamol, ketoprofen, and antibiotics were observed in hospital wastewaters compared to urban wastewaters. Globally higher removals were observed in the hospital wastewater treatment plant, and some parameters were shown to be of high importance regarding removal efficiencies: hydraulic retention time, redox conditions, and ambient temperature. Eleven pharmaceuticals were still quantified at relevant concentrations in hospital and urban wastewaters after treatment (e.g., up to 1 μg/L for sulfamethoxazole). However, as the urban flow was about 37 times higher than the hospital flow, the hospital contribution appeared relatively low compared to domestic discharges. Thanks to the SIPIBEL site, data obtained from this 2-year program are useful to evaluate the relevance of separate hospital wastewater treatment.
KeywordsPharmaceuticals Antibiotics Wastewater treatment Hospital wastewater Removal
The authors thank the SIPIBEL field observatory on the hospital’s effluents and urban wastewater treatment plants for displaying data and measurements and the European Union, the Rhone-Mediterranean Corsica water agency, the Rhône Alpes Region, the ONEMA, and the French Ministry of Environment for their support.
- Azuma T, Arima N, Tsukada A, Hirami S, Matsuoka R, Moriwake R, Ishiuchi H, Inoyama T, Teranishi Y, Yamaoka M, Mino Y, Hayashi T, Fujita Y, Masada M (2016) Detection of pharmaceuticals and phytochemicals together with their metabolites in hospital effluents in Japan, and their contribution to sewage treatment plant influents. Sci Total Environ 548:189–197CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Barbieri M, Carrera J, Ayora C, Sanchez-Vila X, Licha T, Nodler K, Osorio V, Perez S, Kock-Schulmeyer M, de Alda ML, Barcelo D (2012) Formation of diclofenac and sulfamethoxazole reversible transformation products in aquifer material under denitrifying conditions: batch experiments. Sci Total Environ 426:256–263CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Bergé A, Wiest L, Giroud B, Baudot R, Vulliet E (2017) Occurrence of multi-class surfactants in urban wastewater: contribution of a healthcare facility to the pollution transported into the sewerage system (in this issue)Google Scholar
- Cavalié P (2014) Analyse des ventes de médicaments en France en 2013. http://www.ansm.fr
- Chonova T, Lecomte V, Bertrand-Krajewski J-L, Dagot C, Lévi Y, Perrodin Y, Labanowski J, Wiest L, Gonzalez-Ospina A, Bouchez A, Cournoyer B, Sebastian C (2017) The SIPIBEL project: treatment of both hospital and urban wastewater in a conventional urban wastewater treatment plant, Environmental Science and Pollution Research, acceptedGoogle Scholar
- European Commission (1991) Directive 91/271/EEC of the council of the European communities of 21st May 1991 concerning urban waste water treatment to protect the water environment from the adverse effects of discharges of urban waste water and from certain industrial discharges. Off J Eur Communities 135:40–52Google Scholar
- Eymery F, Choubert J-M, Lepot B, Gasperi J, Lachenal J, Coquery M (2011) Guide technique opérationnel : Pratiques d’échantillonnage et de conditionnement en vue de la recherche de micropolluants prioritaires et émergents en assainissement collectif et industriel, Première version. Irstea/CemagrefGoogle Scholar
- Lachassagne D, Soubrand M, Casellas M, Gonzalez-Ospina A, Dagot C (2015) Impact of sludge stabilization processes and sludge origin (urban or hospital) on the mobility of pharmaceutical compounds following sludge landspreading in laboratory soil-column experiments. Environ Sci Pollut Res 22:17135–17150CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Lecomte V (2016) Rapport SIPIBEL 2011–2015: résultats de quatre années de suivi, d'études et de recherches, sur le site pilote de Bellecombe, accessed in www.graie.org/Sipibel/publications
- Zhou XF, Zhang YL, Shi L, Chen JB, Qiang ZM, Zhang TC (2013) Partitioning of fluoroquinolones on wastewater sludge. Clean: Soil, Air, Water 41:820–827Google Scholar