Biohazard Waste Disposal
Biohazard waste is generally defined as any waste contaminated with potentially infectious agents or materials that may pose a threat to public health or the environment.
Biohazard waste is made up of medical waste, sharps waste, and other biohazardous substances. This is sometimes just referred to as medical waste. However, medical waste is more-specifically generated in a lab or clinical setting.
Where does waste come from other than a medical facility?
- Jails and Prisons
- Veterinarian Offices, Animal Shelters, Animal Hospitals
- Schools and Universities
How is this waste collected?
- Waste is placed in red biohazard bags or puncture-proof sharps containers.
- Bags and containers are placed in a lined regulated medical waste container.
- The containers are picked up by a licensed, insured medical waste disposal service.
What is done with the waste?
Unlike in the past, when this waste was simply sent to a landfill, it is now sorted and sterilized to be made safe for the environment and then placed in a landfill. This is usually done through the use of an autoclave which works by forcing are out of the unit and steaming the items at an intensely high heat. The temperature is so high that no bacteria can survive.
What waste is recycled?
Some items, such as plastic, are sterilized and sanitized by being melted down and sent to a recycling center to be used in making new products. Melting down these plastic products ensures they will be bacteria-free when sent on to be recycled.