SouthCot allots P4 million to upgrade health care waste treatment facility

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 28 July) – The provincial government of South Cotabato is investing an additional P4 million for the expansion and upgrading this year of its health care waste treatment facility.

Siegfred Flaviano, head of the Provincial Environment Management Office (Pemo), said Tuesday the funds will be utilized for the construction of an additional waste treatment cell and the upgrading of its pyroclave machine.

He said the move was aimed to expand and improve the operations of the treatment facility, which is situated within the Integrated Provincial Environment Center in Barangay Tinongcop, Tantangan town.

“It will allow the facility to operate faster and more efficient as well as cope with the increasing volume of medical wastes generated by local hospitals and other related facilities,” he told reporters.

Flaviano said the opening of the additional treatment cell, which costs P2 million, will mainly increase the capacity of the waste treatment plant.

He said another P2 million was allocated for the upgrading of the pyroclave system, which was acquired by the provincial government for P5.1 million in 2016.

They will install a new shredder and convert its liquefied petroleum gas-powered heating system to instead use nitrogen generated from various wastes, he said.

Flaviano said the new technology will allow the plant to produce oxygen that can be used by local hospitals.

“This will significantly reduce our operating cost and provide other benefits as well,” he said.

The treatment facility, which is managed by Pemo, presently caters to an average of 13 tons of medical wastes a month from 26 government and private hospitals, coronavirus disease (COVID-19) patient care centers and isolation facilities, and dialysis centers.

The only of its kind operated by a local government unit in Region 12 (Soccsksargen), the plant generates an average monthly income of around P400,000.

In the last three years, Flaviano said the facility has only accepted medical wastes coming from the province’s 10 towns and lone city.

“Once the expansion and upgrading is complete, we may be able to accommodate standing requests from other neighboring provinces and cities as well,” he added. (MindaNews)