Madurai

Caution is the key factor in disposing waste

With the number of COVID-19 patients on the rise, government and private facilities are tasked with the job of disposing biomedical waste in a safe manner. Senior members from various hospital administrations say that they have been provided a strict set of guidelines from the Central Pollution Control Board on disposal of biomedical waste.

A senior official from Madurai district’s Pollution Control Board says that the GRH’s COVID-19 super speciality ward generates around 350 to 400 kg of waste each day. The waste is bagged twice, segregated and placed in a remote location on campus. Waste is then picked up and incinerated at a Common Biomedical Waste Treatment Facility (CBWTF) in Virudhunagar.

A private contractor who manages biomedical waste for most hospitals in the four districts- Madurai, Ramanathapuram, Sivaganga and Virudhunagar- has employees who pick up this waste from each hospital and transport it to the CBWTF.

Dean, Government Rajaji Hospital, J. Sangumani says that they take extensive caution at the GRH that includes double-bagging and placing biomedical waste in large yellow bags. “Whether there is COVID-19 or not, all medical instruments used to treat patients are thoroughly sterilized. We ensure that the instruments are sanitized too. Staff in-charge of cleaning inside the COVID-19 hospital must wear personal protection equipment (PPE) as their health is important to us,” he said.

General Manager, Operations, Meenakshi Mission Hospital, J. Adel, said that they have a separate donning and doffing area where all staff wearing PPEs must ensure that they dispose of their equipment in a safe manner. “All the hospital linen from the COVID-19 ward are separately washed at a particular time in the day. After they are washed, the machines are cleaned too,” he said.

Head, Critical Care Unit, Velammal Medical College Hospital, S. Vijay Anand, said that they have colour-coded bags which are sprayed with 1% hypochlorite solution and sealed twice in order to ensure that waste too is sanitized. “We label the waste and have the contractor pick it up when five such bags accumulate. After our shift, our clothes too are dipped in 1% hypochlorite solution as it is a disinfectant,” he said.

Caution is key during these times, he added.

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Printable version | Jul 6, 2020 8:34:21 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/caution-is-the-key-factor-in-disposing-waste/article31955626.ece

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