TODAY -

Disposal of bio-medical wastes : Govt set to pull up defaulting hospitals
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, May 03 2019: As per an instruction of the Chief Secretary, authorities concerned have initiated due process to take up necessary action against private hospitals, laboratories and diagnostic centres which are not disposing their biomedical wastes properly.

There are around 34 private hospitals and 42 laboratories/diagnostic centres in the State and they have been discharging considerable volume of bio-medical wastes every single day.

Bio-medical wastes pose health risk of varying degrees directly or indirectly if they are not properly disposed.

While some of the private hospitals, laboratories and diagnostic centres dispose biomedical wastes properly, others do not.

Shija Hospital has a bio-medical treatment centre.

Bio-medical wastes discharged by the hospital and some other Government and private hospitals are treated at the centre, said a source.

Nonetheless, the State Government decided to take up necessary action against private hospitals, laboratories and diagnostic centres which have not been discharging biomedical wastes properly as per several provisions of the Solid Waste Management Rules 2016 and in accordance with a directive of the National Green Tribunal.

The matter was discussed at a review meeting chaired by Chief Secretary Dr J Suresh Babu last month.

The Chief Secretary instructed the Health Department and the Manipur Pollution Control Board (MPCB) to take up concrete actions againstprivate hospitals and other health facilities which have not been disposing biomedical wastes properly.

As per the Chief Secretary's instruction, Health Department would furnish a list of hospitals and health centres registered with the department to MPCB.

On its parts, MPCB would furnish a list of hospitals whose bio-medical wastes are being treated at the Shija Hospital bio-medical treatment centre.

After collating the two lists, Health Department and MPCB would take up collective action against defaulting hospitals and health centres, said the source.

Meanwhile, MAHUD Department has also been instructed to identify a suitable site of one acre for disposal and treatment of bio-medical wastes as a long term measure.

The review meeting chaired by the Chief Secretary also deliberated on plastic wastes which have become one major factor for different forms of pollution.

Notably, Forest and Environment Department issued an order on August 21, 2017 whereby plastics thinner that 50 microns were banned in the State and people who are found using or selling such plastics are punishable under Section 15 of the Environment Protection Act 1966.There is only one factory in the State which is manufacturing plastic bags but no plastics thinner than 50 microns are found at the factory.

As such, it is believed that the very thin plastics (less than 50 microns) used in the State are brought from outside through Moreh.

Plastics are not generally bio-degradable and if they get buried, it can cause land pollution.

And if the plastic wastes are burnt, they emit gases which are harmful to health.

It was for these reasons that plastics thinner than 50 microns are banned in the State.

Anyone found selling or using such thin plastics can be fined Rs one lakh and/or imprisoned for five years.

The review meeting further discussed about pollution of rivers due to disposal of household wastes into rivers.

It is said that Imphal city alone discharges 120 tonnes of solid waste in a day and this volume is expected to rise to 170 tonnes in 2035 .

Only half of these 120 tonnes are collected by different management authorities and NGOs.

There is also a question of causing air, water and land pollution due to improper disposal of waste materials, added the source.


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