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The Boston Globe

Metro

Citing backlog, state health agency pleads for funds

Budget cited in drop in safety, medical scrutiny

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health, reeling from years of budget cuts, has fallen significantly behind in investigating consumer complaints about medical facilities and lacks sufficient staff to conduct safety inspections of every­thing from summer camps to food manufacturers to housing for migrant farm workers.

There’s a wait of more than five months for investigating problems reported in Massachusetts hospitals, nursing homes, dialysis centers, and clinics. Meanwhile, medical and biological waste from roughly 600 biotechnology firms is not being routinely monitored to ensure proper disposal.

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