Sri Lanka committee to investigate cancer hospital radioactive waste

Dec 16, Colombo: Sri Lanka’s health minister Maithreepala Sirisena has appointed a high-powered committee to investigate the waste disposal from the National Cancer Institute after the National Atomic Energy Authority (NAEA) has found some radioactive substances in bathing wells and a paddy field in the areas surrounding the hospital in Maharagama.

Western Provincial Environment Minister Udaya Gammanpila yesterday has brought the issue to the attention of the authorities.

Gammanpila yesterday claimed that the waste containing radioactive material released from the Cancer Hospital is the cause for the high rate of cancer incidences observed in the areas near the hospital.

The NAEA has conducted a survey among the households in the area on a request made by Provincial Environment Minister, the national news agency, Lankapuvath reported. However, the survey has not found any radioactive material in drinking wells.

Minister Sirirsena has directed the authorities to take immediate action to investigate the matter and take measures to dispose the radioactive waste safely.

National Cancer Institute, Maharagama, is the premier tertiary referral hospital dedicated to the diagnosis and follow up treatment of cancer patients in Sri Lanka which provides all its service free to the patients.

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