In today’s society more medical patients can successfully receive their treatments at home than at any time in the recent past. This has revolutionized patient care in a wide variety of ways, but choosing to receive treatment for diabetes, renal failure, or any number of other illnesses requiring specialized equipment or medications comes at a price: increased patient responsibility. Hospitals have strict protocols in place, but when it comes to home medical waste disposal New York patients are often left without much guidance. This article is intended to lay a framework for a better understanding of what is considered medical waste and how it can safely be disposed of.
The most common form of home medical waste comes in the form of sharps, including hypodermic needles, syringes, lancets, glass tubes, and IV tubing. Since these come into direct contact with the patient’s blood they can easily transmit dangerous diseases. Sharps should never be thrown away without taking adequate precautions. Place them in a sealed container with a small opening such as a juice bottle or an empty bleach bottle. Used sharps can be sterilized by filling this container with a simple bleach solution for twenty minutes, but the sharps themselves still must be disposed of at a dedicated collection site.
Other forms of at-home medical waste can be safely disposed of in a normal garbage can if adequate care is taken to avoid contagion. This includes placing all medical gloves, soiled bandages, disposable sheets or clothing, and dialysis machine filters into securely fastened bags prior to placing them in the trash.
Failing to properly dispose of the needles, syringes, soiled bandages, and old medications that are produced by at-home care can endanger other residents, guests, and even sanitation workers if they are thrown out with regular household trash. Patients and their caregivers should take some time to establish regular home protocols for dealing with any and all medical waste produced over the course of treatment.
If patients or caregivers are uncertain about how to safely dispose of any form of medical waste there are online services that provide easy and effective means of disposal that do not require home treatment or transport to far-off collection sites. Learn more online today.