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Use of auto disable syringes made mandatory

The Directorate General of Health Services has made it mandatory for all states to use auto disable (AD) syringes in all government hospitals and health centres.

health and fitness Updated: Dec 12, 2008 00:13 IST
Sanchita Sharma

The Directorate General of Health Services has made it mandatory for all states to use auto disable (AD) syringes in all government hospitals and health centres.

AD syringes eliminate the possibility of reuse and hence the risk of infection through blood.

“AD syringes have been in use for three years in centrally-run health programmes. Following that, all central hospitals were supposed to use AD syringes by 2007 and all states by 2008, but there have been some delay. While almost all central hospitals are using AD syringes, health centres in many states are not and we want them to start by April 30, 2009,” Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss told HT.

A 2002-05 IndiaCLEN Program Evaluation Network study, funded by the health ministry and the World Bank, had found that nearly two-third injections were administered in an unsafe manner and one-third carried the risk of transmitting blood-borne infections. Acting on the report, the Ministry of Health introduced AD syringes in 2006, with plans to upscale over the next two years.

Marc Koska, founder of the SafePoint Trust UK that promotes use of AD syringes, was also present at the meeting where the directive was issued. “AD syringes are being used in Delhi, Karnataka, Kerala and Madhya Pradesh, and with companies manufacturing them in India, the scale [of implementation] should not be a problem,” Koska said .

A major concern about AD syringes is the large quantity of bio-medical waste it generates. “With only urban centres are equipped with infrastructure for treatment of bio-medical waste, we have had to give states some time to prepare,” said Ramadoss. “But they have to act now.”