By Tara Rippin • 01 February 2021 • 14:59
CREDIT: NMCI Twitter
Costa Blanca hospitals ‘overwhelmed’ by Covid medical waste as collection services struggle to keep up.
THE increase in the volume of medical waste due to the pandemic is reportedly putting the collection and treatment systems across the country under ‘unmanageable’ pressure.
Materials used in hospitals and medical centres have doubled as a result of the coronavirus crisis, and some autonomous communities are reporting serious problems with the disposal of waste.
“The volume of sanitary waste has grown so much that there is no way to attend to it. There are areas of the country where (collection service) have literally collapsed,” one anonymous source told La Vanguardia.
Last week there were reports of boxes with discarded materials accumulating at the General Hospital of Alicante, resulting in complaints from health and maintenance personnel.
And at Sant Joan de Alicante hospital, hundreds of boxes had been piled up in a basement for days, also waiting to be removed for incineration.
Various sources have attributed this type of situation to the “impossibility of being able to remove such an overwhelming volume of waste at the required rate”.
The Ministry of Health of the Valencian Community admits that the situation is overwhelming.
The Generalitat has a waste collection service in health centres, but “with the pandemic, its volume has increased considerably, which is why this service has been expanded through an emergency contract,” says a spokesperson.
Meanwhile, Ana Prieto, spokesperson for the Guardia Civil Seprona, said that “numerous irregularities have been detected in the management of hospital waste from different companies throughout Spain”.
She added: “These relate to incidents that have been detected as a result of the high volume of waste produced and insufficient management capacity in treatment centres.”
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Tara Rippin is a reporter for Spain’s largest English-speaking newspaper, Euro Weekly News, and is responsible for the Costa Blanca region.
She has been in journalism for more than 20 years, having worked for local newspapers in the Midlands, UK, before relocating to Spain in 1990.
Since arriving, the mother-of-one has made her home on the Costa Blanca, while spending 18 months at the EWN head office in Fuengirola on the Costa del Sol.
She loves being part of a community that has a wonderful expat and Spanish mix, and strives to bring the latest and most relevant news to EWN’s loyal and valued readers.
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