Who is Maintaining Your Medical Waste?

I don’t have time to close up and label the medical waste box
– so the medical waste transport driver does it.

This is a statement often uttered by busy employees responsible for managing their facility’s medical waste. Whether using a pickup service or mailing medical waste, only properly trained persons at the generating facility should package, label, and sign the tracking form for the waste shipment. That does not include a pickup service driver or untrained facility employee.

Continue reading “Who is Maintaining Your Medical Waste?”


Part Three: What’s Going into that Red Bag?

Reducing Your Medical Waste Through RightClassificationSM – Part Three

In the first 2 parts (part 1, part 2) of this series, we defined Regulated Medical Waste (RMW) and discussed how it was regulated, contained and disposed. In the final part of this series, we will discuss what a facility can specifically do to reduce its volume of RMW through proper segregation (RightClassificationSM) and therefore reduce spending.

1. Review your policy.
Your medical waste management plan can be included as a part of your Bloodborne Pathogens Exposure Control Plan or it can be maintained as a separate policy document. Regardless, make sure RMW is clearly defined and employees are able to access your policy for clear guidance. For example, if your policy defines RMW as “blood and other body fluids” instead of “blood and OPIM” (with the definition of OPIM included), employees and even trainers may become confused. In addition, you must follow what your policy states. So make sure your policy is not forcing you to “wrong classify” your waste and spend more money than necessary.

Continue reading “Part Three: What’s Going into that Red Bag?”


Part Two: What’s Going into that Red Bag?

Reducing Your Medical Waste Through RightClassificationSM – A Three Part Series

In part one of this series, we discussed how OSHA defines regulated medical waste (RMW). In the second part of this series, we will address how to properly segregate, contain, and dispose of RMW.

Who regulates RMW disposal?

While OSHA defines RMW and regulates its containment and safe handling by employees, individual states, Department of Transportation (DOT), United States Postal Service (USPS), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulate the transport and disposal.

Continue reading “Part Two: What’s Going into that Red Bag?”


Part One: What’s Going into that Red Biohazard Bag?

Reducing Your Medical Waste Through RightClassificationSM – A Three Part Series

Twenty-four years after the Medical Waste Tracking Act prompted the passing of state medical waste regulations, red biohazard bags are still being filled with trash. Granted, we seldom see pizza boxes or drink cans in red bags anymore, but we still see trash, such as dressings, gauze, gloves, test strips, urine cups, empty medication vials, table and tray covers, device packaging, tubing, pads, and adults diapers. Proper waste segregation (RightClassification℠) is crucial to assure proper containment and disposal of trash, regulated medical waste (RMW), and hazardous waste. Many reasons are given as to why these items end up in red biohazard bags, including:

Continue reading “Part One: What’s Going into that Red Biohazard Bag?”