Palampur: No treatment plant, medical waste finds way into drains, water channels : The Tribune India

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Palampur: No treatment plant, medical waste finds way into drains, water channels

Palampur: No treatment plant, medical waste finds way into drains, water channels


Our Correspondent

Palampur, July 8

The scientific management of medical waste in Kangra district has become a matter of concern. Despite Kangra being the biggest district of the state and home to several public and private health institutions, including Tanda Medical College, there is no proper arrangement for the scientific handling of medical and bio-medical waste, particularly impacting the rural areas of the district.

The state government has failed to take steps to scientifically dispose of waste generated from hospitals, medical health institutions, colleges and university labs.

In the absence of a medical waste treatment plant, liquid waste from hospitals finds its way into drains, ultimately flowing into streams. Similarly, solid waste is disposed of in municipal dumping grounds.

The reckless disposal of waste from government medical institutions in the district has become a major environmental and health hazard, causing diseases such as HIV, hepatitis, jaundice and typhoid.

Information gathered by The Tribune revealed that some major government and private health institutions had engaged private firms for the collection and disposal of medical waste. However, small-scale clinics and hospitals in rural areas still lack proper waste management and disposal arrangements, and resort to dumping medical waste in water channels and on vacant land.

In a bid to ensure that medical waste is managed scientifically, the Government of India has made amendments to the Environment and Forest Protection Act, with these being forwarded to the state government from time to time for implementation.

The amended Bio-Medical Waste Management and Handling Rules have also been forwarded to all state governments by the Union Government.

A senior official of the Health Department, while talking to The Tribune, said the disposal of bio-medical waste of the district had been outsourced to a Kangra-based private agency.

All government hospitals had signed agreements with the agency for the safe handling and disposal of the waste they generated. Large-scale private hospitals and nursing homes had also engaged the same agency for waste disposal, the official added.

The Health Department kept a check on the disposal of medical waste, the official said, adding that small-scale private clinics in rural areas had also been directed by the department to ensure the safe disposal of the bio-medical waste.

#Kangra #Palampur


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