The Disposal of Clinical Waste

The Disposal of Clinical Waste

The disposal of any waste product is crucial for living a healthy life. You wouldn’t just throw your rubbish on the floor and let it sit there, would you? You would instead put your rubbish in the correct bin. This is just as, if not more, important for clinical waste as it can quickly become a hazard. But first, what is clinical waste and how does it differ from other types of waste disposable items?

What is Clinical Waste?

As the name suggests, clinical waste refers to any waste that is from medical, nursing, dental, pharmaceutical, skin penetration or other related clinical activity. Clinical waste is able to spread the risk of injuries and infections as it contains human or animal tissue. This includes blood, bodily fluids, drugs, swabs, syringes and any other item that might have been in contact with tissues. Clinical waste is separate from both general and commercial waste.

General Waste

Also known as residual waste, this form of rubbish can be gathered from businesses and households. This waste is comprised of items that cannot be recycled such as non-recyclable plastics, kitchen scraps and polythene. In order to not become clinical waste, it must be free from any contamination linking to human or animal tissue.

Commercial Waste

This type of waste is associated with businesses or the purpose of education, sport and recreational activities. Examples include food wrappers from a baseball game or the rubbish found in a hotel room. The key factor for considering the disposal of commercial waste is that it is considered solid and non-hazardous.

How to Dispose of Clinical Waste Properly

To follow UK laws regarding the disposal of clinical waste, the rubbish must be correctly segregated, stored, disposed and documented. The 1990 Environment Protection Act ensured that there must be a proper way to dispose of clinical waste while documenting any transfers. This must be done through a registered waste disposal carrier who will take the waste away to a licensed waste disposal site. If each step is not completed correctly, the company could be fined. In some cases where UK laws are abused, facilities might be shut down.

The disposal of waste is a serious matter, resulting in fines or the shutting down of businesses and companies if not taken care of. Getting rid of any type of waste should be done with tact, but especially for those who have clinical waste as it contains hazardous parts. Do not risk the spread of infection and disease through improper disposal methods. Adhere to UK laws by segregating, storing, documenting and disposing of any clinical waste properly.