Hospitals contractors summoned over wastes
Jean Marvette A. Demecillo (The Freeman) - January 23, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — To shed light on disposal of hospital wastes, the Cebu City Council has called for an executive session on January 30 at the session hall.


Invited are the representatives from the Environmental Management Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR-EMB), hospitals, and Treatment, Storage, and Disposal (TSD) facilities. It will be held at 9:30 a.m.

City Councilor Joel Garganera said the session might help in addressing the issue on the disposal of hospital and medical wastes that might pose danger to the constituents not only from the affected local government units but also to their neighboring areas.

During yesterday’s regular session, Garganera delivered a privilege speech about the issue circulating on social media on the hospital wastes found floating off the waters of Mactan Island earlier this month.

“These medical wastes were classified as hazardous or infectious, both having to undergo a different procedure for treatment, storage and disposal and there were two known and accredited TSD facility by the DENR-EMB-Region VII in Metro Cebu,” he said.

The DENR-EMB accredited TSD facilities—Davao City Environmental Care, Inc. (DCECI) in Umapad, Mandaue City and the Pollution Abatement Systems Specialist, Inc. (PASSI) in Barangay Inayawan, Cebu City—to collect, transport and treat hospital wastes.

Garganera said the permit of DCECI expired last August 2018, while PASSI’s permits expired in June 2018, meaning Metro Cebu has no accredited TSD facilities that will process the hazardous and infectious wastes.

“The greatest concern that we have now is, where will all these infectious and hospital wastes go and what are the health risks of having to keep them in the storage area of these hospital clinics?” he said.

Last week, he said he met about 30 representatives from hospitals, medical facilities, and birthing centers to discuss the extent of the problem.

Garganera said he was told that maternity clinics are having a hard time disposing the placenta from the mother’s womb after giving birth because of the foul odor that it will emit when stored for few days.

“Some hospitals are now keeping their wastes in drums. Even CCMC (Cebu City Medical Center) is having a difficult time disposing their medical and infectious wastes that seem to have been exponentially increasing by time,” he said.

Garganera said the government should look into ways on how to address the matter even if hospitals are responsible of disposing their wastes. —   KBQ (FREEMAN)

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