Medical wastes threaten Ctg public healthTushar Hayat . Chittagong
Mindless dumping of medical wastes in the Chittagong city has put public health in danger, with the authorities turning a blind eye to the hazards.
People from different parts of the city said hospitals, clinics and diagnostic centres were dumping blood-soaked cottons, needles, gauges, blades and broken bottles of medicines in dustbins or open spaces near the hospitals and clinics.
They alleged that dumping of needles and syringes and broken glasses in the dustbins and open spaces often causes injuries to the pedestrians and added that even amputated human organs were dumped in the dustbins.
Medical experts said haphazard dumping of clinical wastes could result in deadly diseases like gangrene, tetanus, hepatitis, tuberculosis and even HIV.
They expressed concern that hundreds of children were growing in unhygienic condition as most of the 200 private clinics were located in residential areas.
Professor AQM Sirajul Islam Chowdhury, a skin and sexual disease specialist, said radioactive wastes, unused medicines or vaccines are returned to the manufacturers and certain wastes are dumped underground in many countries.
‘We have no guidelines for hygienic disposal of medical wastes in our country,’ he said, stressing the need for formulating a guideline and enactment of laws with tough punishment for unhygienic dumping.
Dr Mohammed Salim, a director at diagnostic laboratory Lancet at Panchlaish in the city, said they were being compelled to dump medical wastes in dustbins in the absence of proper disposal system.
He also said the city corporation was supposed to collect medical wastes from hospitals, clinics and pathological laboratories and dump them in proper manner but the corporation was quit indifferent in this regard.
The chief medical officer of the Chittagong City Corporation Salim Akhter Chowdhury said the authorities of hospitals, clinics and pathological laboratories were not also extending cooperation to ensure hygienic disposal of medical wastes.
‘We have sent letters to authorities of the hospitals, clinics and pathological laboratories repeatedly seeking their cooperation for introducing a hygienic waste management system but there was no response,’ he added.
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