Tips & Advice
What is sharps disposal?
Sharps disposal is the collection of used sharps (needles and syringes). Sharps can be disposed of in designated drop boxes or supervised collection sites, household hazardous waste collection sites, via mail-back programs, and through residential special waste pick-up services.
Why is some medical waste categorized as hazardous?
Regulated medical waste (RMW) can be categorized as hazardous when it poses a significant threat of transmitting infections. This includes any waste contaminated by blood, bodily fluids, or any other potentially infectious materials.
What are types of medical waste?
The six main types of medical waste are:
- pathological waste
- blood and blood products
- cultures and stocks of infectious agents
- contaminated sharps (needles)
- isolation waste
- contaminated animal carcasses, body parts, and bedding
How do you get rid of medical waste?
Medical waste can be disposed of in several ways, all regulated by the government. There are regulated medical waste and hazardous material sites for disposing of medical waste. For sharps (needles) there are drop boxes, collection sites, waste collection sites, mail-back programs, and special residential pick up services. There are also certified services that specialize in hazardous waste pick up.
Medical waste is generated by hospitals, blood banks, veterinary clinics, health care facilities, doctor’s offices, and medical research facilities. These include pathological waste, blood and blood products, cultures and stocks of infectious agents, contaminated sharps (needles), isolation waste; and contaminated animal carcasses, body parts, and bedding.