The Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) is expected to commence operations of its hydroclave waste disposal system by November 1, says Michael Khan, Chief Executive Officer, GPHC.
According to Khan, in addition to the physical construction and installation works, the policy and procedures regarding the facility are completed. He added that the special sanitation truck which has to uplift waste from various sites and transport it to the processing centre at GPHC was purchased.
Khan related that this modern disposal system costs over US$1M and has the capacity to manage all waste from health facilities across the country. The system could have already been in operation but GPHC is awaiting a final inspection of the facility to ensure that no adjustment is required, he added.
Khan noted that currently infectious waste from GPHC and other health facilities including private hospitals is being dumped at the Haag Bosch Sanitary Landfill located at Eccles, East Bank Demerara.
This scenario will change after the disposal facility becomes operational. It is expected that all waste even those from private facilities will be disposed at the facility. However, private health facilities will have to buy into the arrangement.
Though a price has not yet been set, some health facilities are anxiously awaiting GPHC to start this service as they are currently utilizing the Mayor and City Council to dispose of their waste. The CEO stressed that after one month of the facility’s operation, a cost analysis will be conducted and a fee to attach to the service offered will be derived.
This project is a collaboration between Government and the World Bank and falls under a HIV prevention and control project geared at expanding the Ministry of Health’s response to the virus.
The hydroclave is a double-walled cylindrical vessel which utilizes steam under pressure to sterilize hazardous healthcare waste. The system at GPHC will fragment, sterilize, shred and compact infectious waste.
It is said that the operation of the hydroclave waste disposal system will transform the way medical waste is managed in Guyana. In addition to transforming waste to a dry state, regardless of its original waste content, the hydroclave processing style also serves to reduce the volume of waste to about 85 percent and in its final state is accepted as harmless.
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