23 September, 2020

Why Coronavirus Outbreak Is Piling Pressure On India’s Biomedical Waste Disposal System

Protocol says used disposable masks, gloves, aprons, head covers et al should be incinerated or given a burial — at least 100 feet deep. This is not happening.

Why Coronavirus Outbreak Is Piling Pressure On India’s Biomedical Waste Disposal System
outlookindia.com
2020-07-17T18:04:50+05:30

A stray dog fools around with a blue plastic coverall in a video shot in Coimbatore—endearing footage for those who know how playful dogs are, happily making a game out of anything. The image reflects a sinister side, too. Not of the dog, but of the creaking waste disposal system in a country struggling to contain an out-of-control contagion: the new coronavirus. Was the PPE suit flayed around by the dog contaminated, used in the fight against the COVID-19 outbreak? How did the dog get it? Did it fall from a passing ambulance? Or, was it discarded recklessly? The reason is not known, but it’s the second instance of a PPE kit found on a Coimbatore road. Similar cases abound across India. “Masks and sanitiser bottles have become a common sight on roads,” says Joginder Kumar, a garbage collector with the Municipal Corporation of Ludhiana. He empties out bins onto trucks and clears roads of this new kind of litter—worn masks, empty hand sanitiser bottles and, sometimes, discarded PPE kits too. “That spiky rascal could be hanging on to anyone of...

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