By Zaldy Comanda
BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio Domogan directed the Health Services Office to intensify the monitoring of the waste management and disposal of the five hospitals operating in the city following the discovery of medical waste dumped in Tuba, Benguet last July.
Domogan instructed City Health Officer Dr. Rowena Galpo to address and look into the observations and recommendations on medical waste disposal after inspections on the waste management practices of Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center, Baguio Medical Center, Pines City Doctors Hospital, Notre Dame De Chartres Hospital and SLU Hospital of the Sacred Heart.
The inspections were conducted after mixed hospital wastes, allegedly from the contractor of one of the hospitals, were discovered on a lot in Barangay Tabaan Norte in Tuba.
The contractor was charged with violation of Republic Act (RA) 9003 or the Solid Waste Management Act, RA 6969 or the Toxic and Hazardous Waste Act and RA 9147 or the Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act.
The inspection report submitted by HSO Sanitation Division Chief Engr. Charles Bryan Carame gave descriptions on the waste management and disposal systems of the five hospitals, observations on the procedure and storage areas and facilities being used and recommendations on the deficiencies and problems noted.
Domogan said the CHSO should make sure that the hospitals will comply with all the recommendations in the report.
Galpo instructed Carame to ensure that the assigned sanitation inspectors will conduct follow up inspections until the hospitals have complied with regulations.
She also ordered the monitoring of the waste disposal systems of small laboratories, funeral parlors and similar establishments.
Based on the report, all the hospitals have engaged the services of private transporter or hauler to dispose of their health care wastes.
The HSO team suggested ways to improve the facilities and for the hospitals to review their contract provisions with their waste transporters specifically on the frequency of hauling to prevent accumulation of the refuse.