The refuse disposal site near the Hospital’s morgue looked very unsightly with refuse falling and leaking when the Ghana News Agency visited the Facility on Thursday.
All types of hazardous and non-hazardous wastes in red, yellow, and black polythene bags were spread across the yard.
The Ghana News Agency (GNA) spotted some sharp needles, used nose masks, disposable PPEs, used paper towels, empty medicine bottles (pharmaceutical waste) and plastics all over, almost to where some taxi drivers operate.
Checks by the GNA indicate that the sanitation company engaged by the Facility to manage its waste has not cleared the refuse for weeks with the heaps possibly becoming a hiding place for reptiles.
A highly placed source at the Facility also told the GNA that the Hospital’s incinerator was malfunctioning, with the likelihood of the waste spreading infectious diseases with the onset of the rains.
The site is about 30 to 40 feet away from where some people sell items, including ready-to-eat food.
Public health emergency
An Environmental Expert said the situation could pose a great threat to human life, the environment, and the ecology.
The Expert said it could cause serious disease outbreaks like cholera, typhoid, and respiratory tract infection.
It could also cause skin and other mucus membrane disease and discomfort.
Mr Douglas Tagoe, the Greater Accra Regional Environmental Health Officer, described the sight as “repulsive” and that he had not seen such a spectacle in decades.
He said he would direct his officer in charge of the area to write to the Hospital.
Meanwhile, Dr Emmanuel Srofenyo, the Medical Director of the Hospital, said Jakora Ventures, the waste management company engaged for those services had failed to clear the refuse due to “challenges” at the landfill site.
He debunked reports that the Hospital’s incinerator was not working and said efforts were being made to have the refuse cleared tomorrow, Friday, June 10, 2022.
Experts say it is essential for hospitals and general medical facilities to keep their environment clean, always.
They say research shows that keeping the environment of hospitals clean helps to prevent infections.
Hospital waste management in Ghana is said to face the risk of cross-contamination due to poor sorting culture and total waste management with increased potential for the spread of infections and chemical pollutants, according to experts.