Hyderabad: Out of 4,200 Healthcare Facilities (HCF) in Telangana, 350 have violated the Bio-Medical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules, reveals a Right to Information (RTI) query. Padmanabha Reddy from the Forum for Good Governance had filed the RTI.
The Bio-Medical Waste (Management and Handling) Rules was introduced in 1998 and amended in 2016. Under these rules, HCFs should properly segregate bio-medical waste, packed in containers, and transported to treatment plants. Every HCF should also have sewage treatment plants for treating liquid bio-medical waste. The facilities should also apply for authorisation with the Pollution Control Board (PCB) to handle the bio-medical waste. PCB issues notice to people who don’t abide by the BMW rules.
How PCB issues notices?
The RTI information reveals that PCB issued a notice to TVSSP Hospital in Vanasthalipuram, Rangareddy district, for not abiding by the BMW rules. The Board issued the notice as the hospital was operating without authorisation from the Board. There are around 4,200 HCFs in Telangana, out of which about 1,500 are located in Hyderabad, reveals the RTI Data. However, there are only 11 common BMW treating and disposal plants for these 4,200 HCFs.
Environmental Engineer M Venkanna from the Pollution Control Board says, “The common BMW treating plants, regularly collects waste from the HCFs and it ensures that the waste is treated and disposed of properly.”
Padmanabha Reddy claims that PCB doesn’t usually follow the notices with action and that an ordinary man is unaware of the dangers of bio-waste. “Such wastes release germs that are highly dangerous to us, and thus they should be treated properly. After a notice period of 10 days, PCB is supposed to take action against the HCFs. However, it seems that the Board has some soft corner towards HCF's , and thus they are not taking any action.”
The Forum for Good Governance had repeatedly complained about this problem with PCB, but they have not taken any action. Therefore, they wrote to Telangana Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan to solve the issue of bio-medical wastes.