The analysis of the risks associated with the environment, humans, animals, and plant life and the management of such risks is approached in a strategic and integrated manner with what is known as biosafety. Martin Sanders is a biosafety and public health professional. He got a degree in zoology in 1990. He has received his doctorate from the department of immunology and infectious diseases at the Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health.
Biosafety was not a very commonly known topic till the pandemic hit the planet. This has become of paramount importance because maintaining this coupled with biosecurity is the only thing that could help prevent a similar situation to the present pandemic. The basis of this preventive measure is in the identification of critical links between different sectors. The possibility of any hazard moving in among these sectors, which may have intense consequences throughout the system, also forms a basis for biosafety.
Martin Sanders and other professionals such as him closely understand the three primary concepts associated with biosecurity to remove even the slightest biological contamination. They are namely – biocontainment, biological hazard, and bio-protection. Biocontainment is the preventive measure taken to ensure that any disease does not get leaked from where it is being researched.
Biological hazard refers to the risk of exposure that cannot be controlled and causes different ailments. The term bio-protection refers to the prevention of the reckless handling of toxins and pathogens and other things to minimize the risk of exposure of the masses to harmful diseases.
Biosecurity has specific guidelines that need to be adhered to facilitate its optimum functioning. They may be summarised as:
- The individuals handling biological hazards should be educated with the knowledge of handling the same carefully. Safety should be maintained in its handling both for the masses and the individuals themselves.
- Every individual is always at a risk of becoming a carrier of pathogenic microorganisms. This makes it mandatory for everyone to follow and maintain the biosafety measures.
- The primary and secondary barriers ought to be used for safeguarding oneself. The primary barriers include safety equipment, while the secondary barriers are the ventilation systems and hand washers. Along with this, of course, there is the vaccine. Every individual must responsibly make use of these tools to be on the safe side.
- Depending on what type of waste is being discharged, the wastes ought to be accordingly disposed of.
The areas of application of biosafety can be listed as:
- Food – the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations opines that biosafety allows one to assess food safety.
- Environment – biosafety takes the plant and animal diseases to ensure that any kind of infestation does not transfer from the animals to the humans.
- Livestock and agriculture – biosafety professionals such as Martin Sanders will vouch that biosafety makes sure that no disease, if any, from the livestock passes onto the society in any way.
Thus, it is needless to say that educating the masses about biosafety is the easiest way to deal with a situation as grave as the pandemic.