school medical waste disposal

K-12 schools may generate a variety of regulated medical wastes (RMW) in their on-site health clinics and from staff/student need for EpiPens and diabetes management devices. These wastes shouldn’t be mixed with regular trash or placed in recycling containers. Instead, they must be disposed of according to federal, state, and local regulations.

Sharps Compliance can help. Our convenient mailback medical waste disposal solutions help schools manage their RMW safely and stay in compliance.

Pharmaceutical Waste Disposal Solutions for Schools

Laws and regulations vary, but most states don’t allow students to self-medicate; staff must dispense medications. Leftover or expired medications represent a health and environmental hazard when mixed with regular trash. Schools need a disposal plan for medications that aren’t returned to parents.

Sharps Compliance offers a medication disposal option to help schools comply with disposal regulations. MedSafe Basic is a collection and disposal system for only non-controlled unused patient medications. The all-inclusive system with prepaid shipping, tracking, and destruction comes in various sizes.

Our pharmaceutical waste disposal solutions meet and exceed Disposal Act requirements and are returned via USPS or UPS for proper destruction.

Safe Disposal of Sharps Waste Generated at Schools

Chronic diseases among adults and children are on the increase in the US population. According to the CDC, at least 210,000 children and teens have been diagnosed with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. The CDC advises schools to develop plans to help students manage their diabetes and handle diabetes-related emergencies. Students also need access to the safe disposal of used lancets, injector pens, and syringes. Secure, compliant disposal is essential to protect students and staff from the dangers of accidental needlestick injuries.

The incidence of allergies – especially food allergies – is increasing as well. One in 10 adults and one in 13 minors have a food allergy. Some students may need to keep an EpiPen at school due to food, insect sting, or other allergies. In addition, many schools hold sporting and entertainment events that are open to the public.

Our sharps disposal solutions include:

  • Sharps Mailback containers are for used sharps and small quantities of regulated medical waste. They’re ideal for school infirmaries needing easy-to-use sharps disposal solutions that include pre-addressed, prepaid return shipping.
  • Sharps Shipback systems may be placed in restrooms, teacher lounges, or other areas where self-injectors can safely and privately dispose of used sharps. They include a wall enclosure mount, a Covidien 5-quart sharps container, and a prepaid return system.

Disposal of Pressurized Asthma Inhalers in Schools

About 6 million children under 18 in the US have asthma. In most cases with medication, school nurses distribute it to pupils on schedule. However, students with asthma may need to keep their rescue medications with them during the school day. Parents should always check with school officials about state law and school policy regarding inhalers and other self-administered treatments.

Any school with students who require asthma treatments should have a plan to dispose of used inhalers and nebulizers. Inhalers are so common that many people don’t realize that gas-propelled  inhalers are considered a DOT hazardous material.

Our inhaler disposal system is an all-in-one solution that provides schools with a regulatory compliant and easy-to-administer platform to effectively collect, transport, and destroy used gas-propelled inhalers. Ensuring their campuses are equipped with compliant, environmentally-responsible waste solutions for inhalers and other medications helps schools achieve CDC’s Healthy Schools initiative.

Sharps Compliance offers comprehensive RMW management services for schools, healthcare providers, and other medical waste generators. Contact us at 800.772.5657 for more information or request a free service quote.

Kathryn earned her Masters in Public Health with a concentration in Epidemiology from Texas A&M University and her Bachelor of Science from the University of Texas. She is certified in high-complexity testing by the ASCP and has been published in the journal Cancer Cytopathology. Her experience ranges from the clinical laboratory to compliance expertise in biohazardous waste management.

published in Medical Waste