What is healthcare waste? Home / News / What is healthcare waste?
Posted on 5 April 2023

Are you wondering what is healthcare waste? If so, you can rest assured that you’re not alone. Many business owners find themselves unsure of what is and what isn’t classed as healthcare waste as well as how to dispose of it properly. At Anyway Washrooms, we can assist with clinical waste disposal in Sheffield, providing a professional and affordable service you can rely on. 

Disposing of healthcare waste in Sheffield Orange Clinical Waste Bags

Healthcare activities tend to produce a great deal of waste, much of which simply can’t be avoided. Some companies and organisations dispose of waste more effectively than others. Sadly, it’s not uncommon for items like needles to be thrown away incorrectly, which can be both unsafe and bad for the environment. A carefully-crafted clinical waste plan can help you dispose of these goods and materials in a safer, more eco-friendly manner.

What types of healthcare waste are there?

Around 85% of the waste from the medical sector isn’t hazardous. However, the other 15% can be toxic, radioactive or infectious. Hazardous waste can include dressings used on patients, needles, chemical substances, nappies and medicines which have passed their expiry date. Anyone who works with healthcare waste is responsible for dealing with it correctly.

Dividing clinical waste into categories

It can be helpful to divide clinical waste into specific categories. Clinical waste is anything that could infect someone or cause contamination. This kind of waste can include PPE, bandages, dressings and needles. There are various types of clinical waste. 

Cytotoxic waste 

Cytotoxic waste includes cytotoxic and cytostatic drugs as well as any materials which may have been contaminated by them. These kinds of drugs are often used to treat people with cancers and others diseases. If these drugs and materials aren’t disposed of correctly, there’s a big chance someone might come into contact with them. If someone is exposed to cytotoxic waste, they could experience vomiting, liver damage, abdominal pain and foetal loss or malformation.

Offensive wasteYellow Sharps Disposal in Sheffield

Offensive waste is non-infectious waste which doesn’t have any chemical substances which could be unpleasant for somebody to come into contact with. This can include used PPE, used dressings, nappies, maternity waste and incontinence pads. People also refer to domestic waste as general or municipal waste. This waste isn’t normally hazardous and is unlikely to cause harm. It can often be recycled or sent to landfill if this isn’t possible.

The risks of improper disposal of healthcare waste 

If you don’t deal with healthcare waste correctly, there’s always a risk unwanted exposure could occur. This kind of waste can cause problems not only for individuals but for the environment tool. Companies and organisations that fail to deal with waste correctly can face substantial fines and penalties. People that can be affected by waste that has not been dealt with in the right way can include patients, healthcare workers and the general public. 

If hazardous waste ends up in landfill, it can even pollute soil and contaminate groundwater. Hazardous waste can also cause air pollution and therefore pose a serious risk to the general public. Many serious infections can result from incorrectly-managed waste. You must dispose of healthcare waste correctly at all times.

How to get help with clinical waste disposal

Now you know what is healthcare waste, you may be wondering who can help with clinical waste disposal in Sheffield. Thankfully, assistance is available. When you’re looking for healthcare waste disposal services in South Yorkshire, look for an experienced and reputable company. The firm you opt for should have served a wide range of medical organisations. Ask as many questions as you feel you need to before you go ahead and book medical waste management services.

Who can assist with clinical waste disposal in Sheffield?

At Anyway Washrooms, we can assist you whenever you need clinical waste disposal in Sheffield. We have been providing healthcare waste disposal services for many years, serving organisations from many sectors, including care homes, hospitals, dental surgeries and general practitioners. The work we carry out ensures your activities do not present a risk of injury or infection. We work hard to prevent staff, visitors and patients from exposure to medicines, contaminated equipment and sharps.

We are proud to have Environment Agency certification for managing waste and we’re one of a very small number of South Yorkshire independent clinical waste stations to have this certification. At Anyway Washrooms, we are always on hand to collect and dispose of your clinical waste. This can include medicines, sharps, soiled PPE and nappies. Weekly, fortnightly and monthly collections are available. As no two clients are ever quite the same, we tailor our services towards your specific needs. We can provide you with the ideal bespoke service for your requirements.

The services that we provide can help you avoid big fines and other penalties. They can also protect your reputation. It’s so important to get rid of clinical waste correctly. If you add clinical waste to domestic bins, you could incur a fine of up to £50,000. However, our services enable you to remain fully compliant and protect the integrity and prosperity of your business. We have vast experience in disposing of all kinds of clinical waste. What’s more is that we know the latest legislation inside out. This makes it easier for you to avoid falling foul of laws and incurring huge penalties.

Contact us

If you’re still unsure what is healthcare waste or you need help with clinical waste disposal in Sheffield, get in touch. You can reach Anyway Washrooms today by giving us a call at 0114 419 7649 or by completing the form on the site. We will get back to you as quickly as possible to provide you with the information you need.

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