Srinagar, 14 October: Kashmir has produced 32,392.04 Kg of Covid-19 biomedical waste in the months of August and September combined.
As per the data of J&K State Pollution Control Board (J&K SPCB), hospitals and local bodies (sources) authorized to facilitate Covid-19 patients in all districts of Kashmir, have generated 16,6076.98 Kg and 15715.06 Kg of Covid-19 biomedical waste in the month of August and September, respectively.
J&K Pollution Control Board, Regional Director (Kashmir) Rafi Ahmed Bhat said, “The board has been collecting, treating and disposing off Covid-19 biomedical waste at Common Bio-Medical Waste Treatment Facility (CBWTF) at Lassipora in South Kashmir’s Pulwama district, but unfortunately the incompetence of the sources (hospitals) is making our job quite complicated.”
Senior scientist J&K SPCB, Dr. Sabeena Sultan said that the major problem they are facing is with respect to the segregation of the biomedical waste at the sources.
Senior scientist told Kashmir News Bureau (KNB), “the infectious Covid-19 biomedical waste is only 10-15% out of the overall biomedical waste produced at the sources (hospitals, local bodies), but since the sources are not segregating the waste as per the Bio-Medical Waste Management Rules, the whole quantum of waste becomes infected with Covid-19”.
She further said that disposing off the whole quantum of waste (Covid-19 and other biomedical waste) requires the utilization of different equipment as well as procedures, which results in the consumption of more energy than actually required (to dispose Covid19 biomedical waste only).
“If only the segregation of the waste was done properly, we could save time and energy in the collection, treatment and disposal processes,” she added.
Covid-19 biomedical waste could include Pee kits, masks, shoe covers, gloves, human tissue, items contaminated with blood, body fluids like dressings, plaster casts, cotton swabs, beddings contaminated with blood or body fluids, blood bags, needles, syringes etc.
Director Rafi Ahmad confirmed the use of COVID19BWM mobile application to monitor coronavirus-related biomedical waste and to compile data through the electronic manifest system, since 08 August, prior to that, all the data used to be filed manually.
There are two biomedical waste management facilities in Kashmir, one is Clean City Waste Management facility and other is CBWTF but the Covid-19 biomedical waste is disposed of at the latter.
According to Central Pollution Control Board data, since June, all states and Union Territories of India have generated 18,006 tonnes of Covid-19-related biomedical waste which is being collected, treated and disposed of by 198 Common biomedical waste treatment facilities around the country.