Clinical waste to be destroyed at Muthurajawela | Sunday Observer

Clinical waste to be destroyed at Muthurajawela

Clinical waste that has been piling up at the National Hospital will be stored in containers under sanitary conditions as a temporary measure till a permanent solution is found, Health officials told the Sunday Observer.

Director of Health Services Dr Anil Jasinghe said a large quantity of the waste has already been discarded.

Recently Minister of Health, Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine Rajitha Senaratne revealed that the government has allocated a plot of land in the Muthurajawela area following Cabinet approval to construct a plant to destroy clinical waste gathered from hospitals in the Western province. “However as the commencement of this would take time we have decided on this temporary measure to deal with the issue” Dr Jasinghe said.

Clinical waste at the National Hospital has been piling up behind the Epilepsy unit of the hospital for over a month. However, since August 29 authorities have started clearing the waste and destroying them at a location belonging to the Sri Jayawardenapura Hospital.

However, environmentalists are now raising objections to the new location at Muthurajawela. According to Environmentalist Sajeewa Chamikara of the Environmental Conservation Trust, choosing Muthurajawela for such a project is problematic. “Internationally non-residential areas are chosen for such purposes,” he said adding that however, Muthurajawela is a wetland resident complex. He said constructing such a plant may also have adverse effects on its environment and biosystems.

Previously clinical waste from hospitals in the province was destroyed in a land belonging to the Mulleriyawa Base Hospital. However, amidst opposition by residents in the area a stay order was issued temporarily preventing the destruction of clinical waste on the premises.