Biomedical waste management, a concern

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 06 Oct 2017 10:39:16


 

By R S Parmar,

With the rise in healthcare facilities, city generates one metric tonne of biomedical waste every day

There is about 100 percent rise in biomedical waste during last four to five years and is increasing day by day, with opening of new small hospitals in every nook and corner of the city

The quantum of biomedical waste jumped in last couple of years in city has raised concern among the masses. With the rise in healthcare facilities, city generates one metric tonne of biomedical waste every day. There is about 100 percent rise in biomedical waste during last four to five years and is increasing day by day, with opening of new small hospitals in every nook and corner of the city.


Biomedical waste includes highly infectious, biomedical waste, including intravenous fluid bottles, syringes; blood stained cotton, tissue or parts of organs (removed during surgery).
According to the Jabalpur Municipal Corporation (JMC), about 70 healthcare establishments are presently registered with the body for disposal of their biomedical waste. This year too, two major healthcare centres were added to the list with many smaller nursing homes.


For the huge quantum of waste, the city has only a sole common waste treatment facility at the dumping ground that was commissioned 8 years back, certified by the State Pollution Control Board for scientific disposal of biomedical waste. In addition to the increase in the number of facilities generating such waste, the number of disposal equipment has also gone up in recent years, with awareness among the masses.


Earlier, many items such as a needle would be autoclaved and used. Today, majority of apparatus used in the operation are disposable and hence, the volume of biomedical waste generated form the existing facilities also goes up, said Government.


According the reports, experts have identified healthcare waste as the second most hazardous waste after radioactive waste. The Biomedical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules was amended in 2003. Scientific handling and disposal involves healthcare facilities segregating different types of waste in five color-coded bags with most infectious waste going into the yellow and red bags. Some items such as gloves and glass syringes are autoclaved, shredded and recycled, while the contents from the yellow coded bags go into the incinerator and reduced to ashes.


Sources said, while Government agencies such as Madhya Pradesh State Pollution Control Board show 100 percent compliance of rules, but there is no transparency in the method of treatment of biomedical waste. This has increased pollution of bio medical waste in public places, causing problem to common men. Chief Medical and Health Officer (CMHO), Dr Murli Agrawal said, increasing bio medical waste is emerging as a problem.

“We are trying our level best to sensitise the concerned hospital owners to segregate the bio medical waste for proper disposal as per the set guidelines of State Pollution Control Board. To educate the doctors, paramedical, staff of private and Government hospitals, District Health Services is organising workshop many times in a year, so that, they would be upgraded with Government’s latest norms for proper disposal of the bio medical waste, he added.