Trichy: Though biomedical waste management was made mandatory for all government and private hospitals in India, many still fall behind in segregating hazardous waste from general garbage leading to the spread of diseases.
The raid by the city health officer (CHO) on Tuesday brought to light the negligence of hospitals to dispose biomedical waste as per the guidelines.
As per an agreement with Medicare Enviro Systems, a biomedical firm, all hospitals should send the waste to the centre which acts as a common facility by sending it to the treatment plant at Sengipatty in Thanjavur on the Trichy border.
In Trichy district alone, around 150 private hospitals, 11 government hospitals and 68 primary health centres (PHCs) have registered with the centre.
“Almost all the hospitals entered into agreement with us for biomedical waste disposal. We are collecting waste from Trichy hospitals by our two vehicles on a daily basis. Moreover, we are constantly advising them to properly segregate such waste,” said R Shantharam, managing partner of the company.
Biomedical waste should be segregated into four types – infectious waste in red bags, anatomical waste in yellow bags, plastic and glass waste in blue bags and disorder medicines in black bags. However, some hospitals fail to do the segregation properly. So, it leads to excessive smoke during processing at the plant.
According to the guidelines, hospitals have to pay Rs 5 per bed on a monthly basis and 100g of waste should be collected from each bed. However, sources said that some hospitals manipulated the number of beds to reduce their expense on biomedical waste disposal because the treatment plant will pinpoint if the waste limit exceeds.
On the other hand, many hospitals segregated the biomedical wastes in separate bags during the inspection of the health officials. But they mixed them up with the general waste and send them to Ariyamangalam garbage yard.
“We had issued notices to four hospitals including the MGMGH to rectify discrepancies in biomedical waste disposal last month (June). Today’s (Tuesday) raid revealed that Gastro Care hospital and MGMGH failed to do so. We will continue our inspection in rest of the hospitals in the city,” CHO Dr S Mariappan told TOI.
Private hospitals in rural areas of the district should be monitored by the joint director of health services (JDHS). “We will send circulars to all the private hospitals to adhere to the biomedical waste management rules,” said Dr K Chandra, JDHS.
As many as 68 PHCs also have to dispose the biomedical waste. “Except seven upgraded PHCs in Uppiliyapuram, Mannachanallur, Andhanallur, T Pettai, Manikandam, Lalgudi and Manapparai, all the PHCs are burying the biomedical waste on their premises as per the guidelines. The biomedical waste in the seven PHCs are sent to the biomedical treatment centre in Sengipatty,” Dr I Ravindran, deputy director of health services, Trichy.