The hazardous wastes at hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare facilities need to be properly disposed of. Failure to do so can increase the chances of spreading disease. Also, this can negatively affect the water supply and the wildlife. Proper medical waste disposal in California needs to be taken seriously, here are the reasons why.
Classifications of Medical Waste
Always remember that medical waste is dangerous. That is why the World Health Organization has classified medical waste in different groups or categories. It is crucial that you are familiar with these classifications when dealing with medical waste.
- This is where solvents, disinfectants, heavy metals from medical devices, batteries, as well as thermometers and compact fluorescents are categorized.
- Cancer treatment substances like carcinogenic, mutagenic, and teratogenic.
- This includes blood, bodily fluids, bandages, disposable equipment, and infectious agents used in the laboratory for research.
- Human tissues and carcasses.
- These are unused, expired, or contaminated medications in the facility that needs to be disposed of.
- These are mostly diagnostic and radiotherapy materials.
- Anything that has needles like syringes. This also includes broken glass and blades or anything that can potentially injure someone or expose an individual to infection.
- Other medical waste materials that are not included in the above categories.
Importance of Medical Waste Management
There is a reason why medical wastes are categorized in such a way by the WHO. They are dangerous and can potentially put someones’ life at risk of contracting infections or spreading diseases. Aside from it dangers, here are more reasons why medical waste management is essential:
- Putting Staff Safety At Risk. When thinking about the possible dangers that poor medical waste disposal can bring, the staff of a healthcare facility are the most vulnerable. Medical workers are at risk of contracting diseases like ebola, malaria, syphilis, hepatitis, and HIV.
- Community Is At Risk. Outside the hospital or clinic, when medical wastes are not properly disposed of, it can also put the community at risk. When these are thrown away like normal garbage, they end up in the landfills. And that puts people in this area at risk.
- Affect Water Supply. When chemicals and other hazardous wastes find its way to the water supply, this can put everyone in danger. Remember that these chemicals can soak through the soil and then enter the groundwater.
- Dangers to the Wildlife. If medical wastes are not properly disposed, it can also put the wildlife population at risk. When these hazardous materials get in the soil, plants absorb it. Then animals that eat grass ridden by these hazardous chemicals can get sick or die.
It is crucial that healthcare facilities should consider the proper way of disposing of their hazardous wastes. But of course, you need to know where to get solutions and services from. Choose a leading company in this industry to ensure that you are following the proper medical waste disposal guidelines.
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