A decade after setting up 12 major common biomedical waste facilities,an inspection report of the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) has found that only six comply with Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) guidelines. The report further adds that almost all need to be upgraded. Punes facility,however,has earned a good rating while Solapur,Sangli and Aurangabad are ranked poor.
The MPCB has been implementing the Biomedical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules which is basically handling and treating waste material generated at hospitals,dispensaries,nursing homes,blood banks and diagnostic centres.
In the first phase of inspection of 12 major facilities of the state, Pune has earned 76 points in areas like transportation,loading and unloading,shredding,disinfection of waste,maintaining air pollution control device and effluent treatment plant,according to Rajeev Kumar Mital,member secretary of MPCB.
Pune is followed by Mumbai which also has got a good rating while the performance of facilities in Nashik,Thane and Ahmednagar have bagged a fair rating. As many as 27,221 health care establishments are covered by the12 facilities which treat an approximate 29,000 kg biomedical waste daily.
Inspection of the major common biomedical waste facilities was carried out in March this year to check their compliance with the CPCB guidelines. In Pune,Passco Environmental Solution Private Limited has been disposing 3,000 kg of biomedical waste daily. Waste is picked up from 2297 clinics/dispensaries,17 blood banks,226 pathology laboratories and 765 hospitals. Passcos vehicle tracking and bar coding system to collection bags proved helpful for operators to pick up waste from the health care establishments,there were some gaps in the services with no separate storage room for treated/untreated biomedical waste.
Our main concern is lack of space, says Pradeep Mulay,in charge of the facility. We have been urging the Pune Municipal Corporation to identify an acre of land and allot it for separate storage rooms, he added.
According to the MPCB report separate storage rooms were provided by only four facility operators while the others were storing the waste in a haphazard manner,near the incinerator itself which creates a nuisance due to spillage of waste material. Proper records of the biomedical waste collection were also not maintained at several facilities,the report said.