How to Limit Medical Waste at Your Facility

How to Limit Medical Waste at Your Facility

How to Limit Medical Waste at Your Facility

We currently live in a world that is extremely conscious of our waste and its impact on the environment.  What many of us don't consider is the process of removing waste.  Often times, we put trash in the bin and forget all about it.  In medical settings, this waste has a strategic process of removal that has to meet many regulations and guidelines.  Limiting waste has become a large part of the mission of medical facilities in recent years.  As an alternative medical waste treatment, we at Steri-Green believe in environmentally-safe methods of removing medical waste.  In order to avoid adding to the abundance of medical waste, consider these suggestions to limit medical waste at your facility.

Reuse and Disinfect When You Can

Avoid throwing away unnecessary waste by using proper sanitizing and disinfecting methods whenever it is fitting.  Washing soiled linens, such as pillowcases, sheets, and towels, can help to eliminate medical waste that can be reused.  Also, sharp containers and some instruments can also be disinfected and used again.  By reusing appropriate items, you can drastically cut down on medical waste at your practice.  This will also save you money, because you won't be spending on replacement items.

Restrict Access to Red Bags

Red bags used for disposal of medical waste only are often found in place where they don't need to be.  Patient rooms and common areas should have limited, if any, red waste bags.  Patients and their visitors often clutter these bags with non-medical waste, which adds to the abundance of medical waste removed from your facility at the end of each day.   Instead, use regular trash bags to alert patients that those trash receptacles are for any type of garbage.  You don't want to dispose empty pizza boxes with your needles and syringes.

Educate and Train Your Staff

One of the most critical steps to limiting your medical waste is education of your staff.  By alerting your staff to the policies and practices of safe and proper medical waste removal, you will likely be able to keep up with regulations and eliminate unnecessary garbage.  This requires consistency and even frequency in order to be successful.  Hold your staff accountable by having educational trainings a few times a year so the information stays fresh in their minds and they stay on top of eliminating medical waste.

Keep Track of Your Medical Waste

When it comes time to track and audit medical waste, management will typically turn to their contractors for this information.  By not keeping accurate or consistent records of medical waste, they are uneducated about the amount of waste they are producing.  Instead, it is recommended to keep record of your medical waste, and refer to that information frequently.  This will help you to stay on track with your medical waste goals, keep your staff and practice accountable, and also periodically implement suggestions for elimination.

Proper medical waste removal is critical to keeping the environment cleaner and safer.  At Steri-Green, we want tospread awareness and ensure proper, environmentally-safe methods of medical waste disposal.  We take our role as an alternative medical waste treatment company seriously, and we hope that you and your medical facility will partner with us in order to make for a cleaner tomorrow.