Handling sharps waste disposal effectively is one of the greatest challenges medical facilities can face. Read on to learn how you can have your own onsite removal “service”!
Medical sharps waste disposal – avoiding the dangers of infectious waste
When it comes to biomedical waste, almost all categories have the potential to be infectious and spread diseases and viruses further to patients, medical staff, which can easily lead to an infection to “escape” outside the walls of a hospital, if the facility doesn’t have a proper medical waste disposal service.
Sharps are unfortunately even more dangerous than the average waste that medical facilities have to dispose of. As their name indicates, any tool or material that has a sharp point and/or edges qualifies as such. Due to the scenarios in which they are used during treatment, and their ability to cut or penetrate the skin, they can easily spread infections by even the smallest of injuries. This means that even before you consider their disposal, your waste management system needs to have suitable options for storage.
Sharps waste containers are the way to go if you want to minimize the risks associated with this kind of medical trash. In the US they are usually marked by a red color, but they are marked by yellow almost everywhere else in the world. A universal sign though is the biohazard symbol that can be clearly seen on the container, since sharps count as hazardous medical waste. Since they are made of hard plastic, and are often self-locking or can be resealed, you won’t have to worry about them piercing through the container like an average trash bag.
What kind of sharps disposal service should I use?
Once the containers are close to full, the disposal process can start. You can use incinerators to completely destroy them, and while it is certainly effective, it can be quite impractical compared to more modern methods. You can also ask for the outside help of medical waste disposal companies to transport the sharps waste away and dispose of it with their own sterilization methods, but what if we told you can take care of all of this onsite?
Among the most modern pieces of equipment available, some manufacturers have already managed to combine the benefits of autoclaves (AKA steam sterilizers) with that of medical waste shredders. These sterilizers and shredders are available in a variety of load capacities, and can be easily installed and operated right at the site of a medical facility. With the help of a completely automated, environmentally friendly process, any sharps waste (including the container) disposal is handled safely, quickly, and effectively.
Once the load comes out, it will be completely free from any infectious germs, and can be taken out just like regular municipal trash. Not to mention that it will be completely dried, and greatly reduced in size and volume, to enable even easier removal.
In a nutshell, you’ll have your own sharps disposal service onsite, which will be a lot more cost-effective to use in the long run!