In order to ensure the safety of staff, patients, and the environment, it is pertinent that healthcare organizations that generate medical or other biohazardous waste package and dispose of it appropriately. While this may seem easy enough, maintaining compliance with federal, state, and local regulations can be challenging for organizations. San Diego Medical Waste is here to outline some best practices to correctly segregate, package, and dispose of regulated medical waste (RMW) in order to remain consistently compliant.
Understand What is RMW
Unfortunately, there is not a universally accepted definition of regulated medical waste. Federal and state agencies have some variance on what constitutes as such. Nonetheless, a good working definition for RMW is any waste that has the potential to cause infection and has regulations around its collection, transportation, treatment and disposal. This would include biohazardous items that are saturated with liquid or semi-liquid blood or other potentially infectious materials (OPIM). Some examples may include contaminated disposable gowns, used gauze and procedural drapes. Contaminated sharps, including used needles, scalpels or syringes, fall into this category as well. Be sure to place sharps in specially designed, leak- and puncture-proof containers after use. These containers should be clearly labeled biohazardous to warrant proper handling. Once the organization identifies the RMW it generates, guidelines must be created for segregating that waste. Proper segregation includes separate waste streams for biohazardous waste, sharps, pathological waste, chemotherapeutic waste and pharmaceutical waste. Each type of waste must be properly disposed of in order to not pose a threat to health or environmental safety.
How to Properly Package RMW
San Diego Medical Waste serves as your expert in proper handling and packaging of regulated medical waste. We will walk you through the appropriate process that will yield safety, compliance, and efficiency. Here are some steps to get you started:
Step 1: Choose the proper, regulated medical waste container.
Step 2: Line the medical waste container with a red biohazard bag.
Step 3: Place the appropriate medical waste in the lined container.
Step 4: Tie the bag.
Step 5: Prepare the waste for pickup.
Step 6: Check the markings.
Properly training the organization’s staff, auditing your systems, and revising when necessary should become a consistent and scheduled process at your facility. Monitoring how employees adhere to policies and procedures and delivering timely feedback can ensure that mistakes do not become habitual. San Diego Medical Waste can help you maintain compliance through the nuances of the industry.
For more information about our services and proper medical waste disposal, contact San Diego Medical Waste Services, LLC, for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org or 619-990-4604.