Medindia

X

Mumbai Doctors Grumble About Stiff Fines for Bio-medical Waste

by Medindia Content Team on  April 11, 2008 at 12:50 PM Indian Health News   - G J E 4
Mumbai Doctors Grumble About Stiff Fines for Bio-medical Waste
Doctors in the Indian commercial metropolis of Mumbai are protesting the recent move by the city authorities to levy stiff fines for uncleared bio-medical waste.
Advertisement

The fine is in the range of Rs.20,000, but fault the city's biomedical waste disposal system for the problem. It is poorly co-ordinated, they say.

Advertisement
"We have fined 20 doctors so far," R A Rajeev, additional municipal commissioner, told the Times of India Tuesday. Neighbourhood clinics generate biomedical waste and, according to law, have to pay for its disposal, said Rajeev. "They are complaining only because they are facing action."

General practitioners numbering around 10,000-odd family say the action caught them by surprise. They could have been given more time to get their act together, they feel.

Besides only five vendors have been licensed by the authorities to dispose of biomedical waste. "Will these five be able to provide us service when they also have to attend to thousands of nursing homes and hundreds of hospitals that produce huge amounts of biomedical waste?" asked Dr Suhas Pingle, honorary secretary of the state Indian Medical Association (IMA).

The fine is in the range of Rs.20,000, but doctors fault the city's biomedical waste disposal system for the problem. It is poorly co-ordinated, they say.

"We have fined 20 doctors so far," R A Rajeev, additional municipal commissioner, told the Times of India Tuesday. Neighbourhood clinics generate biomedical waste and, according to law, have to pay for its disposal, said Rajeev. "They are complaining only because they are facing action."

General practitioners numbering around 10,000-odd family say the action caught them by surprise. They could have been given more time to get their act together, they feel.

Besides only five vendors have been licensed by the authorities to dispose of biomedical waste. "Will these five be able to provide us service when they also have to attend to thousands of nursing homes and hundreds of hospitals that produce huge amounts of biomedical waste?" asked Dr Suhas Pingle, honorary secretary of the state Indian Medical Association (IMA).

Biomedical waste has emerged as a big concern for the city, with the Bombay high court hearing public interest litigation on the matter. Most big hospitals in the city have been hauled up for failing to adhere to the Biomedical Waste Management Rules, which was framed in 1998.

Since a fortnight beat marshals are on the job, zeroing in on individual doctors who were dumping their waste in community dustbins.

Doctors have not only complained of harassment but also of corruption. A doctor practising near Ghatkopar station (west), who didn't want to be identified, spoke how the beat marshals had caught his sweeper dumping waste in the community bin and asked for Rs 4,000 to settle the matter. "They come in a group of five or six and start shouting in our clinics, making our patients wonder what is going on," he said, adding that three other doctors in the same locality were also targeted.

On Tuesday, 14 doctors from Ghatkopar tied up with a service provider, Shulba Travels, for disposal of their biomedical waste for a year. "We gave a cheque of Rs 4,200 (at Rs 325 per month plus other charges) to the representative," said Dr Anant Seth, a GP who has been practising for over 40 years. "But the syringes, cottons and bandages I use in a month will barely weigh 8 kg."

Dr.Pingle, quoted above, also argued, ""Most GPs are old in age and don't believe in the practice of giving injections for every ailment. So, few needles are generated in our clinics. The dressings and cotton cannot weigh 25 kg a month, whereas the vendors quotes start only from that weight and their fees range between Rs 325 and Rs 500 a month........obviously such rates are not economical for us..."

Another doctor from Andheri wondered if any of the 20 penalised doctors included a quack. "Why only qualified doctors are penalised, what about quacks conducting so-called piles operations in their congested clinics?" he wanted to know.

Source: Medindia
GPL/L
Advertisement

Post your Comments

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
User Avatar
* Your comment can be maximum of 2500 characters
Notify me when reply is posted I agree to the terms and conditions
This has become big business especially since the BMC has got into the act and cancelled the private collectors. the drivers of the van will seach of a single needle to file a complain as 20,000 is big money . this is going to make many good hospitals go out of business if this harrasment continues
honestdoc Saturday, June 13, 2009

You May Also Like

Advertisement
View All