Disposing of Biohazardous or Infectious Waste
There are different types of regulated medical waste. One that is generated the most throughout many different industries, but especially in healthcare is Biohazardous or Infectious Waste. This waste could potentially contain highly dangerous biological agents and should be handled or treated as if it does. Agents could include bacteria, parasites, mold, viruses, and other microorganisms. Biohazardous waste poses a risk to the community and environment if not disposed of properly. In this article we will discuss the general types of biohazardous and infectious waste, and how to properly dispose of it.
Types of Biohazardous Waste
Solid Biohazardous Waste
Solid biohazardous waste consists of non-sharp items that came in contact with human or animal specimens, such as tissue or body fluids. This type of waste can come in the form of petri dishes, PPE (personal protective equipment), linens or isolation patient items, and more. This type of waste should be collected in designated containers lined with red bags so that all staff, employees, and patients or customers know it contains potentially dangerous waste. This collection container should also be marked with the biohazard symbol. A waste collector and processer like us at Bio-MED Medical Waste Transporters then collects the containers for disposal. There are different disposal methods, such as through an autoclave that sterilizes the waste so it's no longer dangerous before final disposal.
Liquid Biohazardous Waste
When it comes to liquid biohazardous waste, this is mostly blood and body fluids potentially contaminated with infectious agents. It is important to note that you should always follow local, state, or federal guidelines regarding medical waste disposal. This can vary state to state. Generally most liquid biohazardous waste should be collected in a leak-proof container with a secured top and labeled as Biohazardous. Disposal or treatment of liquid biohazardous waste can also vary from state to state so consult your medical waste disposal service provider for more information or guidance.
Sharp Biohazardous Waste
Sharp biohazardous waste is also known as "sharps" and is anything that is sharp enough to puncture the skin. It becomes potentially infectious when coming into contact with biological material like when vaccines are administered. The used needle is now sharps biohazardous waste and must be contained properly using a puncture-proof sharps container. Sharps include items like scalpels, needles, broken glass vials, and more. Generally disposable sharps containers can be placed in the biohazardous waste container for final disposal and treatment unless it's a large volume sharps container and DoT approved for transport. Sharp items should NEVER be placed directly into a regulated medical waste box or container without being placed into a designated sharps container first.
Pathological Biohazardous Waste
This type of waste can include items such as removed human or animal organs, tissues, carcasses, etc. Pathological biohazardous waste should be collected in a regulated medical waste box or container with a liner. To help avoid leaks, it is suggested to double-bag the liners and store the waste in secondary containers. The containers should be labeled as "Path" or "Pathological Waste" to help the medical waste hauler know how to handle the waste. Generally pathological waste is treated through incineration
Partnering with Bio-MED Medical Waste Transporters to Dispose of Your Biohazardous Waste
At Bio-MED Medical Waste Transporters, we have over 25 years experience partnering with doctors, dentists, veterinaries, and more through Michigan, Ohio, and northern Kentucky to manage their biohazardous waste of all kinds. We are the experts at managing biohazardous and infectious waste for generators of all sizes and help take the guess work out of the disposal process always adhering to all local, state, and federal regulatory requirements to keep you, your staff, your patients, and our teams safe. Contact us today for a free service quote or to get started today with pick up service.