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Bio Medical Waste Management Training Program, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

Source: Toxics Link, Date: , 2013


Toxics Link in association with IMA (Indian Medical Association, Thiruvananthapuram Chapter) and CISSA (Centre for innovation and Science and Social Action) organized a one day training program on 14th February 2013 at Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. The training was on the “Issues and Challenges in Bio Medical Waste Management and Elimination of Mercury” in Parashala a small town situated at the southern end of Kerala to address some of the challenging issues and gaps in the Hospitals. The training covered various facets of Bio Medical Waste management and hazards of Mercury in the healthcare sector. 


Although the hospital is ‘clean’ in the traditional sense of the word, the scenario of Bio Medical Waste Management leaves a lot to be desired. Except for a few doctors and nurses, the majority of the medical staff has not received any training on Medical Waste management or Mercury Management. The hospital lacks knowledge on proper segregation and awareness on the potential threats that BMW poses. The hospital has a tie up with the only existing and operational Central treatment Facility (CTF) in the state, IMAGE, but the system fails when it comes to efficient segregation and collection of the waste.


The training was mostly restricted to doctors and nurses from the hospital, except for a few doctors from the nearby hospitals. The District Medical Officer (DMO), Mr. T.Peethambaran and the NRHM local area manager, Mr. B.Unnikrishnan were present in the meeting along with Mr. Pramod, project manager from IMAGE, the Central Bio Medical Treatment Facility located in the Palakkad district of Kerala.


Mr. Pramod, (Chief Project Manager, IMAGE), briefed on the status of the Central Treatment Facility (CTF) and the kind of constraints they face. According to him, lack of proper segregation of waste was the most common and difficult thing to manage. Mr. T.Peethambaran, (District Medical Officer), elaborated on the existing scenario in BMW management in the district of Thiruvananthapuram and said that the scenario needs to be improved manifold to reach an ideal situation in waste management. He also talked about the existing dilemma in solid waste management in the state.


Mr. B. Unnikrishnan, (Local Area Manager, NRHM), spoke about the scope of integrating waste management regime in the local planning of NRHM activities and its the benefits. He said that various systems have to work together to efficiently implement and sketch out a sustainable roadmap for waste management in hospitals.


Dr.C.Sureshkumar, (General Secretary, CISSA), discussed the way forward for the hospital in terms of efficient waste management and systematic elimination of Mercury from the hospital. He said that the hospital would issue a circular making it necessary to phase out Mercury from its facility and that an induction programme would be put in place to ensure proper training in BMW Management for the existing staff and the newly recruited ones’.


The training session was followed by a question and answer session, where the experience of Toxics Link in Delhi and various other states in the areas of BMW Management and Mercury was discussed in length. The training was attended by over 70 medical practioners, mostly doctors and nurses.