Managing biomedical waste
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Managing biomedical waste

Post by RK News on Wednesday, October 18, 2023

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The advances made in medical science and the technological interventions in the surgeries conducted these days, have given much relief to us. But with this a new problem has risen. One such serious issue is related to our environment. While our environment is facing many threats, improper and unscientific disposal of biomedical waste is menacingly looking at us, right in the middle of our face. The production of this waste has increased manifold which has resulted in serious threat to environment. As the healthcare sector in the J&K UT grows, so too does the waste it generates. It's important to realize that managing biomedical waste is not just a sanitary concern but a significant factor in maintaining the delicate ecological balance of the UT. Biomedical waste is the byproduct of medical activities, including diagnosis, treatment, immunization, and research — is potentially hazardous and could pose significant health and environmental risks if not properly managed. In J&K UT, the problem is intensified due to the challenging topography, making waste collection and disposal a daunting task. Many experts are of the opinion that there is a lack of comprehensive waste management system and a lack of awareness about the hazards of biomedical waste. Many hospitals and healthcare facilities in the UT are yet to fully implement the Biomedical Waste Management Rules 2016, which mandate safe and environmentally sound management of waste. Also, the lack of appropriate infrastructure, inadequate training, and poor compliance with waste management protocols has further compounded the problem. The need of the hour is to strengthen the regulatory framework and ensure its strict enforcement. Regular audits and inspections of healthcare establishments should be conducted to ensure compliance with waste management rules. Penalties for non-compliance must be severe enough to act as a deterrent. Govt must invest in infrastructure. This includes developing centralized waste treatment facilities in strategic locations across the UT. These facilities should be equipped with modern technologies for waste treatment, such as autoclaving, microwaving, or incineration, and must adhere to environmental standards. The difficult terrain of Jammu and Kashmir necessitates innovative solutions, such as mobile treatment units, to reach remote areas.  Furthermore, the government should incorporate a biomedical waste management module in the curriculum of medical and paramedical courses. Creating awareness among healthcare workers about the hazards of biomedical waste and the importance of its correct management is crucial. Public awareness campaigns should also be conducted to educate the masses about the safe disposal of home-generated biomedical waste. In that regard, an important part can be played by NGOs and media; if these two organs of the society join their hands and launch a large scale campaign involving various sections of the society, a lot can be achieved. And hopefully we can be able to protect ourselves and our environment.





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