Written by Amy Piser
08 Jul 2021

5 Ways Proper Medical Waste Management Benefits Your Practice

There are 5 reasons why medical waste management benefits your practice and your community. Medical waste disposal is a crucial component in every medical practice. When performed responsibly and properly, medical waste management protects the patients, the medical staff, the environment, and even the general population. Moreover, failure to stay in compliance can lead to hefty fines and public relations crises.

Effective medical waste disposal helps medical centers execute proper hospital waste protocols, delivering the following benefits. 
 

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MEDICAL WASTE MANAGEMENT HELPS YOU:

1 / Stay Compliant

2 / Stay Environmentally Responsible

3 / Protect Patients and Staff

4 / Positively Affect Public Health

5 / Improve Operational Efficiency



Medical Waste Management Helps You Stay in Compliance with Oversight Bodies


The importance of staying in compliance with federal and state regulations is impossible to overstate. Numerous agencies oversee medical waste disposal, including

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • The Environmental Protection Agency
  • The Occupational Safety and Health Administration
     

Running afoul of these agencies can result in thousands of dollars per day in fines, in addition to reputational damage that may never be fully repaired.



Medical Waste Management Helps You Stay Environmentally Responsible


Without proper medical waste management, medical facilities could potentially release waste that contaminates soil, water reserves, and plant and animal life. One of the biggest sources of water pollution is runoff. Rainfall that runs along spilled medical waste, chemicals, and other harmful pollutants can pick those pollutants up and deposit them into streams and other waterways. The aquatic animals that are exposed to the pollutants and eat them store those chemicals and toxins in their cells. Other animals and humans then absorb the toxins when they eat exposed fish.

By ensuring all medical waste materials are properly stored, handled, and disposed of, the risk of environmental contamination is significantly reduced.



Medical Waste Management Helps you Protect Patients and Staff
 

The COVID-19 pandemic has overwhelmed numerous medical facilities throughout the United States, undoubtedly causing some facilities to become less-than-rigid with their medical waste disposal. However, following proper medical waste disposal practices is especially important when the medical center is under strain. Chaotic conditions increase the risk of the spread of nosocomial diseases. Having effective medical waste management significantly limits the opportunities for the spread of infection.



Medical Waste Management Can Positively Affect Public Health


Waste from medical facilities can pile up quickly, and in very large quantities. When it is not handled correctly, we risk significant public health implications. Used devices can be illicitly repurposed and sold, and environmental toxins can cause widespread medical conditions like respiratory infections and even cancer.

Correct infectious waste handling ensures that the health of clinical staff, the environment (air and water) and general public health can be protected. 



Medical Waste Management Improves Operational Efficiency


Regulations concerning the disposal of medical waste can be complex and continually changing. Having effective medical waste management solutions helps you navigate the training, oversight, and auditing process seamlessly. Having medical waste disposal support allows you to allocate your time and resources on other matters related to caregiving.

 

What does this support entail? Things like....

  • Waste movement efficiency - mobile solutions for waste movement that help to reduce clinical staff labor.
  • Education, simple tools to help frontline healthcare workers segregate waste properly, reducing costs.
  • Compliance Training - ensuring your staff are trained and licensed to handle waste in line with current regulations 
  • Auditing - performing waste audits on medical waste bins to identify efficiencies in segregation and cost savings 

 

Daniels Health offers medical waste management support to medical centers, hospitals, dental practices, medspas, and other organizations that generate medical waste. For additional information about our medical waste management solutions, please visit our information page

 

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Amy Piser

Amy Piser

Clinical Waste Educator

With 26 years experience working in healthcare, Amy has implemented sustainability initiatives for over 100 hospitals across the United States and brings unique practice and compliance expertise to healthcare waste management.