U.S. Government Agencies Responsible for Medical Waste
If you are a dentist, a hospital administrator, a doctor, or a veterinarian, then you already know that many different governmental agencies regulate many things about your industry. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that various agencies are responsible for regulating medical waste.
US Department of Transportation (DOT)
Under the Hazardous Material Regulations Act, the U.S. Department of Transportation regulates the shipment of medical waste. All workers handling the cargo must get specialized training in security risks, function-specific training, and how to handle cleanup if an accident occurs. While you may choose to hire medical waste hauled, under the Medical Waste Tracking Act of 1988, as the provider, you can be held responsible for the actions of the trucking company.
US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
The primary role of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in medical waste is the regulation of facilities licensed to incinerate the waste. Along with state regulations developed under EPA guidance, workers at facilities must only burn certain things because of the pollution created. All alternative treatments for medical waste are tightly controlled by the EPA under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act to ensure that they are safe.
US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
Enforcing regulations covering the safe disposal of medicines and needles fall under the control of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The FDA has strict rules in patient’s homes along and with inside health care facilities about how drugs and sharp objects, including Sharp needles, must be handled.
US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
Under the Occupational Exposure to Bloodborne Pathogens Standard of 1991, it is the job of OSHA to make sure that the 5.5 million health care workers in the United States stay protected against the dangers from medical waste. OSHA requires red bags and proper handling of all medical waste. It is also their requirements that make health care facilities create an Exposure Control Plan and follow it.
US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
While the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention spends most of their time tracking health care epidemics across the United States, they also issue precise guidelines when they believe an epidemic is ongoing. Medical providers need to stay continuously updated on their standards to make sure they remain in compliance.
US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)
All medicines used in a medical facility must comply with the rules of the Controlled Substances Act. Furthermore, those medicines and other things that are considered hazardous must follow the regulations under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, which the EPA enforces strictly.
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