Jan 11, 2014 News
Eureka Medical Laboratory will soon join the list of medical institutions that utilise the service of the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC)’s Hydroclave system.
In fact the facility is gearing to sign an agreement in this regard in the coming week.
This is according to a statement issued by Clean and Green Guyana (CGG), an Inter-American Development Bank-funded initiative that falls under the purview of the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development.
The hydroclave is a sterilization system that ensures that all medical waste, primarily from public and private medical institutions in Region Four, is treated before disposal, so as to reduce risks of contamination among those who work at the Haags Bosch Sanitary Landfill Site.
Speaking to CGG on Wednesday, Eureka Medical Laboratory’s Deputy Quality Manager Shawn Manbodh said his organisation was never informed by the GPHC that the hydroclave was functional.
He pointed out that it was only until last November that Eureka became aware of its operations via a newspaper article, which called for more medical institutions to get on board.
Manbodh said that prior to this, he was enquiring about the Hydroclave’s readiness from his counterparts at the GPHC. Given their new knowledge about the treatment facility, they are currently awaiting a quotation and requirements needed for the Lab to utilise the hydroclave. These include the cost per poundage of medical waste and how it should be packaged.
He anticipates the lab signing an agreement by next week to use the hydroclave‘s service.
In absence of that service, Eureka Lab has been taking its own precautions in disposing of medical waste. Solid waste is packaged separately in hazard bags and liquids are treated with bleach as well as diluted with water.
Waste Management Consultant at the GPHC, Mr. Rufus Lewis, had in fact told CGG that moves are being made to intensify public awareness efforts, since many private institutions are not treating their infectious waste through the hydroclave.
Moreover, he disclosed that workshops were held to enlighten medical institutions on the importance of the hydroclave’s functions.
According to Lewis, after the medical waste leaves the hydroclave, it is regarded as normal domestic waste. However, he noted that when infectious waste is taken to the landfill site without being treated, it becomes hazardous to waste pickers who work there.
“So we don’t want untreated waste at the landfill because it is dangerous to the pickers who sort out the items there.”
Lewis believes that the issue of getting private hospitals to conform to the use of the hydroclave is linked to the fact that there is currently “no legislation in place to compel them to do so.”
Nevertheless, the Waste Management Consultant said that the GPHC will be aggressively pursuing those hospitals which have not yet complied.
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