Mumbai: Hospitals must have a panel to oversee cleanliness, says HC

The Bombay high court on Wednesday said all civic and government-run hospitals must have dedicated committees to oversee cleanliness and hygiene. The bench headed by chief justice Dipankar Datta and justice Girish Kulkarni said that given the current situation hygiene and cleanliness must be the priority of all hospitals.

The bench was hearing a PIL filed by a Pune-based NGO, highlighting the issue of disposal of biomedical waste by hospitals. The petition stated that the waste was being dumped anywhere which can risk the lives of not only patients, but also their kin and even doctors and hospital staff.

The bench said it is high time that dedicated committees are set up in each hospital run by the BMC and also by the state.

“Each hospital must have a separate committee to oversee cleanliness. That is a must because most patients and relatives visit daily and thus there is a risk of getting infected,” the bench observed.

“Disposal of biomedical waste should be done properly,” the judge said.

Sharing their personal experiences, the judges said they have seen that only the entrance and the ground floor is usually clean. “It shouldn’t happen that the moment we go on the first floor everything is messy,” the bench said.

The bench further noted, “We have seen relatives eat food in the corridors and throw the trash there. This should also stop.”

"Cleanliness and hygiene must now be the priority of all hospitals and authorities," the judges added.

The bench further shared the experience of Malegaon, where orders were passed by another bench of the HC to constitute a committee comprising of the local parliamentarian, commissioner of police, civic officials and others.

“Within 15 days of those orders the situation enhanced. The hospital then seemed to look like a private hospital. Impeccable cleanliness,” the bench pointed out.

“Thus, we think even politicians and elected representatives must step in and create awareness,” the judges added, while adjourning the matter.

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