The Jammu and Kashmir Pollution Control Board has warned the state government that people face a serious threat of contracting deadly diseases as J&K hospitals have failed to adhere to biomedical waste management and handling rules.
The PCB has conducted a survey which said the health authorities always cite shortage of funds as an excuse for the ill management of biomedical waste. The report said none of the hospitals in J&K are managing the waste as per the prescribed rules.
The report said there is no segregation of hospital waste from general waste and there are heaps of used syringes, needles, plastic items, surgical bandages, unused medicines and saline bottles in open spaces around the hospitals.
Many hospitals have acquired facilities such as inclinators and STPs for proper management of hospital waste but they are not in use either due to technical reasons or lack of proper management or funds crunch, said the superintendent of a prominent hospital in Srinagar. A senior PCB official told this newspaper that as per the biomedical waste management and handling rules it is the duty of the management of the health care institutions to ensure that the waste is handled in such a manner that it has no adverse impact either on human health or on the environment.
According to a senior state health official, the majority of the hospitals and private nursing homes do not even submit the required annual report carrying information about the categories and quantities of biomedical waste handled during the preceding one year to obtain proper authorisation from the pollution control board.