Months after it was installed, the Goa Medical College (GMC) and hospital, Bambolim, finally commissioned its hydroclave on Wednesday. The machine, worth Rs 4.5 crore, has the capacity to treat around 100-150kg of bio-medical waste for a cycle of 30-45 minutes and the capacity to shred at 2500-3000kh. The GMC generates about 700-800kg of bio-medical waste everyday.
Briefing mediapersons, GMC dean V N Jindal, who attributed the delay in the commissioning of the machine to "fixing electrical networks and opposition from lcoals", said that the best part of the system is that there is no need to segregate waste before it is loaded into the system for shredding. Jindal said that while the machine can be used for 24 hours, it should preferably not be used non-stop to ensure better functioning. He said there should ideally be two machines — one each for two districts.
Presently, bio-medical waste from both district hospitals—Mapusa district hospital and Hospicio hospital, Margao — is sent to the GMC for disposal. Jindal said that except for human body parts, all other kind of bio-medical waste will be treated in the system. The process consists of pre-shredding of the waste followed by steam sterilization at 138 degrees centigrade. There is no intermediate handling of waste during the entire process, ensuring safety of operators.
The process reduces the volume of waste to 20% and can be disposed of anywhere, as the final product will be entirely sterile. "It can be safely handled and disposed of in regular municipal bins just like normal household waste," Jindal added.
Explaining the technicality of the machine, Swapnil Naik, director of administration said that the machine has a warranty of two years, but in case there's a breakdown, a hooter attached to the monitor that displays the functioning of the machine will sound a warning. The machine's life span is 5-10 years and GMC intends to sign a maintenance contract with the company once the warranty period is over. Two of GMC's employees have been trained by the company to operate the machine.
Hydroclave: A system that shreds waste including plastic plus metal objects such as injections
It does not require waste to be segregated and can shreds 100-150kg of waste for a cycle of about 30-45 minutes
Previously, the GMC would use an incinerator to treat bio-medical waste. [TOI]