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3 Tips To Effectively Manage Medical Waste - Sharpsafe

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3 Tips To Effectively Manage Medical Waste

01 September 2022

Master medical waste management with expert tips. Ensure safety, compliance & efficiency. Your guide to effective healthcare waste disposal.

Medical waste refers to any subset of waste from healthcare facilities including contaminated and infectious materials. Typically, this type of waste comes from facilities such as hospitals, clinics, dental practices, blood banks, and veterinary hospitals, as well as medical research laboratories.

According to the World Health Organisation, about 85% of medical waste is non-hazardous. However, the remaining 15% are highly infectious and can pose a health risk to those who come into contact with it. Due to this, many leading healthcare facilities have set a precedent requiring every type of medical waste generated to be disposed of according to Australian clinical waste disposal guidelines.

Regulations aside, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has also increased the demand for stringent clinical waste management. Here are three tips to help you effectively manage medical waste and prevent the spread of diseases.

Use Specialised Storage

It is crucial to manage medical waste properly by storing and preventing it from leaking out and contaminating surrounding spaces. Clinical waste containers or disposable biohazard containers are the perfect solutions to keep hazardous waste in a secure manner. These containers also play a significant role in transporting medical waste from the premises safely. Take note that clinical waste bins must also comply with Australian regulations, so make sure the containers you have chosen come with all the required certifications.

When using specialised containers, the golden rule is to not mix your medical waste with other items because anything that comes into contact with it will become contaminated. You are required to separate everything thoroughly and label the containers clearly. They should also be colour-coded according to different types of waste.

Handle with Care

Medical waste should never come into contact with your bare skin and must be handled with utmost care. The use of protective garments like PPE, gloves, and masks can help mitigate the risks of contamination. To reduce the chances of touching the waste, you can also use a foot-operated or automatic lidded unit to open and close the bin without using your hands. However, in the event that an individual accidentally or unknowingly touches medical waste, there must be proper protocols in place to resolve the situation; guidelines include immediate care of the exposure site like washing the exposed areas thoroughly and administering first aid, followed by evaluation and tests.

Prevention and awareness are the keys to the safer handling of medical waste. For starters, healthcare professionals or staff members should receive proper training on handling medical wastes after their medical procedures. As an example, medical personnel handling blood-borne pathogens like HIV should take extra precautions and utilise medical sharps containers to dispose of used needles.

Additionally, all medical waste containers should be stored securely in a designated and locked space to prevent anyone from getting to them. Also, ensure clinical waste bags are tied securely and do not overfill them.

Hire The Right Waste Disposal Services Provider 

Medical waste harbours all kinds of dangerous materials that can endanger public health. If medical waste is not correctly disposed of when it leaves your healthcare facility, it may cause harm both to members of the general public as well as the environment at large. For instance, if healthcare facilities do not obtain specialised medical waste disposal services, general waste management employees could be routinely injured. Improper disposal could also lead to hazardous waste spreading into the environment at landfills.

Therefore, it is necessary to employ licensed contractors who are trained to specifically manage medical waste according to Australian laws and regulations. You can refer to your local EPA portal to check if your selected disposal facility has a permit to treat clinical and related waste. In choosing between waste disposal services providers, you can also seek out a reputable waste management company that shows passion about environmental safety and health.

Opt For High-Quality Medical Waste Containers With Plascare

If you need a reliable solution for medical waste disposal, Plascare offers a broad range of solutions to help your facilities achieve the highest standards of safety and hygiene. With over 30 years of experience dealing with medical waste management, we are efficient and responsive to the needs of our customers.

We provide top-notch biomedical waste containers to leading experts in the healthcare industry for managing harmful medical waste in a safe, reliable, and cost-effective way. Contact us to learn more about our services and high-quality clinical waste containers.