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How to Dispose of Medical Waste: A Step-by-Step Guide

How to Dispose of Medical Waste. Disposing of medical waste properly is a must. It’s important to keep your clients, staff, and visitors safe by storing, handling, and disposing of medical waste in a hygienic way. You probably already have processes in place to safely deal with medical waste; however, there are unique challenges that can vary by location, amount of waste generated, and changing regulations. Understandably, many people are cautious about coming into contact with blood or other bodily fluids during their workday. However, a quality compliance training program can help educate and keep your facility safe. Implementing the necessary steps for your business to safely dispose of medical waste is a must. Here is how you can do so at your business efficiently and safely.

What is Medical Waste?

Medical waste is anything generated from healthcare procedures or patient care that may be contaminated with pathogens and/or other infectious materials. Pathogens may include bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites that can cause disease in humans and animals. While the risk of illness from contact with medical waste is low, it is important to handle it carefully to avoid contamination and spreading disease. There are six types of regulated medical waste: Human blood and blood products, Pathological waste, Cultures and stocks of infectious agents, Sharps and items that can puncture the skin are the most important wastes to be aware of, Isolation waste, and Contaminated animal carcasses, body parts and bedding. Also remember that you should not mix regulated medical waste types together.

How to Dispose of Medical Waste

Decide on Your Disposal Service

You’ll need to decide about which disposal service you’re going to use. There are several different means by which you can dispose of medical waste. It’s important to choose a disposal service that is compliant with government regulations for the disposal of medical waste. Choose a medical waste disposal service that has experience in handling commercial medical waste, owns their own treatment plant, has decades of experience, and directly hires and trains the people coming into your office.  

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Follow Manifest Regulations

A manifest is a record of the medical waste that you generate. To comply with government regulations regarding storing and disposal of medical waste, you must be able to prove that you’re following correct procedures. You must be able to provide a record of: The volume of waste that you’re producing, the type of waste that you’re producing, the time you put your medical waste container into use among other regulations. Manifest systems must be auditable with all records kept for at least three years.

Install Safeguards

Make sure that your staff know how to recognize and handle different types of waste. You should have procedures in place for anyone who might come into contact with blood or medical waste. This includes receptionists, janitors, and volunteers. When handling the different types of waste, you should wear protective equipment. This will help to prevent cross-contamination and infection. Be sure to dispose of items that come into contact with medical waste as part of their use as soon as they become contaminated. This will help to prevent the spread of bacteria. Keep all waste in leak proof containers until it is picked up for treatment. Make sure to mark containers clearly as medical waste, pathological waste, etc. This will help to prevent improper treatment methods.

Train Staff

One of the most important ways to ensure your facility is doing everything it can, is to implement a compliance training program. Most fines in a healthcare setting are due to an employee’s lack of knowledge. A compliance program can show that your facility has done everything it can to promote a safe and knowledgeable work staff. With Bio-MED’s online compliance training program we give you all the tools you need right at your fingertips anyplace there is an internet connection.

We make achieving your OSHA compliant requirements as easy as possible with virtual training through our online portal accessible on any computer, tablet, or mobile device. Complete the training at a time that is convenient for your employees’ schedule with options for group or individual sessions. We make it easy for you to track your team’s progress with our simple dashboard where you can also easily view and download their certificates of completion. Manage your OSHA compliance in one powerful web portal!




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