DoH Office Airs Concern on Disposal of Hospital Wastes

Article excerpt

An official of the Environmental and Occupational Health Office (EOHO) of the Department of Health (DoH) recently expressed concern over the improper disposal of hospital wastes in the country and its impact on the health of the people, particularly the rise of respiratory diseases as well as skin diseases.

Dr. Desiree Narvaez, director of the EOHO, urged local governments to strictly monitor hospital wastes in their community during a convention on the link between the health and environment in Pasay City recently.

She said this would be instrumental in avoiding infections caused by improper disposal of toxic hospital wastes and other hazardous byproducts of hospital operations. Hospital wastes are generated as a result of diagnosis, treatment, immunization, research, and biological tests.

These are found in health centers, laboratories, research centers, blood banks, mortuaries, and other health facilities, including dental clinics and cosmetic clinics.

The role of DoH is limited to issuing licenses and many hospitals cease to practice waste segregation and proper waste disposal as soon as their licenses have already been issued.

Narvaez said that only 50 percent of government hospitals comply with the waste segregation policy.

She said the monitoring of hospital wastes should be played largely by local governments. …