Sharps include, but are not limited to, needles, syringes, scalpels, slides, cover slips, pipettes and blood tubes. These materials may go through additional handling steps prior to disposal due to sharps representing the highest potential for injury and exposure. Sharps also include anything which is presently sharp, or has the potential to become sharp (if broken, bent, etc.). All Sharps must be packaged in rigid, sealed, puncture-resistant containers prior to being placed in the transport container (Medical Waste Box).
Sharps disposal is the most common form of medical waste. Whether that consists of needles and syringes or scalpels and wires, these items pose the most risk to both our employees and your staff. It is imperative that your staff packages these items correctly in order to reduce the risk of needle sticks and cuts that could come from infected waste. From West Chester, PA to Delaware to Easton, MD there are businesses disposing of thousands of pounds of sharps every week. In order to protect our healthcare providers as well as our disposal facilities, there are strict guidelines on how sharps need to be packaged. As the risk for pricks increases with disposing of sharps, we must make sure sharps disposal is handled correctly by all our clients.
Sharps Container Disposal
Choice MedWaste receives a lot of inquiries regarding household sharps, specifically diabetic needle disposal in peoples’ homes. Yes, this is technically medical waste; however, our company is only permitted to be performing sharps disposal for businesses, not consumers. The best process for disposing of household needles is to break off the needle from the top of the syringe and place in a rigid plastic container. The recommended containers to use are laundry detergent or other thick plastic containers with sealed lids. Whether you are in Dover, DE or Lancaster and Delaware County, PA, you are allowed to place these containers filled with sharps right in your solid waste trash bin. The most important step of this entire process is placing the item in the TRASH bin – not the recycling bin. Placing the same plastic container full of sharps in a recycling bin puts the employees at recycling plants at risk of being pricked and possibly infected. The absolute safest method for sharps disposal is to purchase sharps containers online (any online store has numerous options) and use these containers designed for sharps to securely dispose in the trash.
That leads us into our core business of sharps disposal for other healthcare businesses. Most of our customers have medical supply companies supporting their organization. The best place to search for sharps containers is through them. Never be afraid to use your buying power to get the best prices possible with your medical supplier. Choice MedWaste will always be prepared to pick up any sharps you may have. Our warehouse has a variety of different sharps containers ranging from 1 qt. to 18 gallon that can service anything from small diabetic needle disposal to large sharps from Philadelphia County Surgery Centers supporting hospitals. We have customers using our containers for sharps disposal from Philadelphia, PA to Dover, DE to Eastern shore of Maryland. Please see our products page for more information or feel free to give us a call if you are looking for something specific! If you are ever in need of a sharps container in an emergency, please do not hesitate call us at any time. Proper packaging of these sharps containers reduces many safety concerns. Never fill the containers above the “full” line on the outside. Once the container has reached the “full” line, make sure the lid is locked down completely. Each sharps container usually has tabs on the lids that permanently lock the container so it cannot be reopened once inside a medical waste box. This is vital for reducing the risk of sharps falling out of the containers and puncturing the box in transit.
As always, if you have any specific questions or concerns, do not hesitate to give us a call! Sharps disposal is an important topic in our industry. Our company helps to safely dispose of regulated medical waste and sharps in Philadelphia, PA, Wilmington, DE, Easton, MD, Lancaster, PA, Dover, DE, Newark, DE, and York, PA. Most of these regulations regarding sharps disposal are consistent across the three states we service as well as the counties (Delaware, Chester, Lancaster county) inside the larger states like Pennsylvania.