Handling Bio-medical Waste

new state-of-the-art bio-medical waste disposal plant at the Goa Medical College is a hint of progress in the arena of waste disposal. Its inauguration today will hopefully mark the end of irresponsible dumping of bio-medical waste and ring in methods prescribed by the law for the same.

The plant has a capacity of handling 800 kg of waste per day. The quantum of waste generated by the GMC is not known, but if spare capacity is available, then refuse from neighbouring hospitals could be incinerated as well. Disposal of such waste is a problem in the state and despite stringent provision of the law not all hospitals have complied with disposal measures. As is the problem with all medical equipment in government-run hospitals, this new plant, erected at a cost of Rs 4.5 crore, could come to a grinding halt if not properly maintained. Timely repairs seem to be the Achilles Heel of the GMC and the previous pyrolysis machine suffered from this fate and died an untimely death. The advantage with this machine is that segregation of waste is not required as it grinds almost everything into smaller pieces. Nonetheless, the GMC and the government would do well to examine the fine print in the maintenance contract, if one exists.