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Hyderabad: Osmania General Hospital draining toxins, blood in Musi river

hospital-waste. Courtesy: DC

Hyderabad: It has been seen in a report prepared by the Human Rights Forum team that the Osmania General Hospital is draining hospital’s waste into the Musi river. That includes untreated biomedical pollutants which are dumped into the river. This water carrying all the germs and harmful substances, in turn running through the residential areas and polluting the drinking water in the water table as well as the surface.

HRF president Dr Babu Rao, a former chief scientist, who worked on the report said, “We have pinpointed a number of plastic bags containing human anatomical waste (yellow bags) lying in the open space outside a locked room of OGH. We also saw that there were two bundles of post-mortem linen on the side of the road leading to the mortuary.”

It also mentions, drains which are adjacent to the old OGH mortuary were choked with body liquids from unclaimed bodies after the postmortem. This liquid was discharged into an open drain outside the building. “One can find body fat and blood in the drain,” it said.

The report found unattended waste in the building adjacent to the mortuary. “The sewer line from the mortuary joins the hospital sewer that in turn joins the municipal sewer outside the OGH premises. OGH sewers are now open due to the laying of a road and they are not leak-proof. If the sewer does not lead to a treatment facility, an on-site retention system with treatment will be necessary before wastewater is discharged,” it said.

Certain types of these pollutants are non-biodegradable and are harmful even in small concentration. With OGH drains joining city sewers fall into Musi River, there is a real-time danger if this situation persists, DR Babu Rao said.

“In the backdrop of Hyderabad becoming the origin for the development of several multi-drug resistant bacteria as the recently published joint study by several German institutes reveals, the present practice of dumping untreated hospital waste of various categories is a huge health hazard. Musi River could become a breeding ground for superbugs,” he said.

A letter criticising the ignorance of OGH was written by former Union secretary Dr E.A.S. Sarma to the chief secretary, and the principal secretary, health. However, the department has not yet questioned the OGH authorities.