HCWH Participates in Events on Sustainable Healthcare Waste Management and Mercury-free Health Care

Nepal — In January, HCWH and members took part in a number of events on sustainable healthcare waste management and mercury-free health care.

First, Bir Hospital, Kathmandu’s oldest, formally inaugurated their waste management centre, which has been developed by Health Care Foundation Nepal (HECAF) with technical support from HCWH. Around 150 guests were shown around the centre by Professor Buland Thapa, Bir Hospital director and Mahesh Nakarmi, HECAF Healthcare Waste Management Program Director. 

Afterwards they visited Bir Hospital’s new antiretroviral treatment centre and attended a short seminar. Prof Thapa, Secretary of Health, Dr Praveen Mishra, Mr Nakarmi and Ruth Stringer, Health Care Without Harm’s International Science and Policy Coordinator spoke about the progress that has been made in waste management and mercury substitution at Bir Hospital, and its role as a model for the rest of the country. 

There were also two stakeholder meetings on healthcare waste management and mercury substitution. HECAF, HCWH and the Ministry of Health and Population held a half day discussion with officials from different Divisions of the Ministry of Health and Population and Department of Health Services. The meeting was also attended by representatives of WHO and UNDP PPUE.

This was followed by a two day National Workshop on Healthcare Waste Management and Mercury-Free Health Care was Organized by Management Division, of the Department of Health, Ministry of Health and Population (MOHP), and supported by World Health Organization (WHO), Center For Public Health And Environmental Development (CEPHED) and HECAF. 

Speakers included Health Secretary Mishra, Ms Rita Joshi, Department of Health Sciences, Ram Charitrah Sah, CEPHED Executive Director, Professor Thapa from Bir Hospital, Mr Nakarmi and international experts Ms Ragini Roy from Toxics Link in India, Mr David Ausdemore from the US CDC and Ruth Stringer, HCWH. 

Lectures were followed by discussions and workgroups which drafted recommendations for future action on national policy needs for mercury substitution and healthcare waste management, technological options and monitoring mechanisms. 

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