When you’re considering all of the medical waste that your healthcare facility produces daily, no doubt the first question on your mind is that of efficiency. Your facility has to maintain a safe and clean environment to keep your patients at ease, and their feelings of security are no doubt your first priority. It’s easy to just want your medical waste gone without really caring how it goes.
However, there is an important question of safety to consider. This is important for your patient’s peace of mind as well!
We consider no safety protocol to be too trivial to give our utmost attention, and we encourage fellow members of the healthcare community to follow good practice in this regard. Here are the most important factors to keep in mind when you dispose of medical waste.
There are Many Types of Medical Waste
The first and most important thing to remember when seeking to dispose of medical waste is that there is a great variety of medical waste disposal situations that demand different solutions. Different types of waste have different regulations for the disposal of medical waste based on the potential danger of their transport and disposal. Sharps, for example, as long as they are properly contained, pose a minimal threat compared to biohazardous waste. Pharmaceutical waste poses a unique threat, as it carries the potential for abuse in the wrong hands. With this in mind, you’ll have to keep the unique protocol of each type of waste in mind.
Leave Disposal to the Professionals
This isn’t a matter of preference. You must adhere to medical waste disposal regulations by contracting an authorized transporter. All medical waste must be transported to an authorized treatment facility. Even in the case of a vehicle failure or emergency, there is a standard of procedure to be followed. There are medical waste disposal regulations in place to ensure that every part of the process goes smoothly, so it’s best to trust the system.
Use the Correct Containment Methods
Regardless of which contractor you choose to dispose of your medical waste, you will have to take certain precautions yourself. Even the best medical waste disposal specialist can’t be there every day, after all. The greatest caution must be taken when storing medical waste in between disposals. Particularly in the case of sharps waste, you must be sure to use puncture proof protective equipment.
When it comes to containing medical waste before you dispose of it, any and all employees that will be dealing with medical waste in any part of the course of their duties must be up to date with OSHA standards. While this does entail a certain amount of work and planning, no safety protocol is too trivial to observe. Meeting with OSHA standards every year will insure that you have a safe and functional waste disposal process.
If you’re interested in learning more about medical or biohazardous waste disposal, read more on our blog at MedWaste Management. We provide resources to help you learn more about waste disposal processes so that you can make the most informed decisions for your facility.