Health ministry told to be more uniform and effective against noise

Noise complaints are on the rise, but some people think that the orders are not being universally applied or enforced by the health ministry.

The Defensoría de los Habitantes released a statement saying that the Ministerio de Salud should issue a directive to ensure that all health authorities in the country universally comply with noise complaint procedures first established in 2015 as an executive order.

This 2015 decree deals in the definitions and procedures related to handling cases of noise pollution and pyrotechnic activities also, officials said.

These measures followed a Defensoría investigation in response to complaints of loud music and entertainment events including pyrotechnics at hotels close to homes. The investigation discovered that there did exist a series of inconsistencies, mismanagement, and even non-compliance with rules governing the health ministry’s authorizations and permits, according to the Defensoría.

The group also was made aware of complaints that the health ministry’s regional and local entities had a discrepancy in whether it enforced the regulations or not. This led to the ombudsman formally recommending the health ministry to issue orders to the localities to remind them of the necessity in

noise021617proceeding with these cases. Particularly of concern was the application of the eighth article in the executive order.

This article charges the Ministerio de Salud to carry out inspections and measure the level of noise inside the particular building in question, according to the legislation. The legislation also requires that each inspection report the date and number of the complaint in addition to formally responding to the complaint itself. The Defensoría also reminded the health ministry of that obligation.

The health ministry has accepted the recommendations of the Defensoría, according to officials. It will try to clarify the correct use of language in its reports defining the noise as pollution and provide a temporary authorization for pyrotechnics in place of a general and long-lasting operating permit, the ministry said.

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