Relevance: Prior to pandemic itself, India’s biomedical waste management capacity was already limited. With the advent of pandemic, biomedical waste generation has increased manifold.
What is the News?
A study was conducted by the International Institute for Population Science (IIPS) to determine the Covid risk due to increase in Biomedical Waste.
What is Biomedical Waste?
- Biomedical Waste means any waste generated during diagnosis, treatment, or immunization of human beings or animals or in research activities.
- Management of biomedical waste is an integral part of infection control and hygiene programs. Without proper treatment, these medical wastes can create an adverse impact on the environment and public health.
- Global studies have linked increased Covid risk to increased biomedical waste (BMW).
Key Findings of the Study:
- The Covid-19 pandemic has significantly increased the generation of biomedical waste. However, the disposal facilities have not increased proportionately.
- Around 23 of the 35 states and Union Territories follow deep burial methods restricted by the Government of India.
- Moreover, 70% of the states do not have a well-established system for monitoring a typical Biomedical Waste processing facility. Only 12 states have upgraded according to the new emission regulations.
- All states that produce more than 100 metric tons a month should be considered high priority states. Moreover, special emphasis should be placed on the hilly states.