Guide To Sharps Waste Disposal for Veterinary Clinics and Animal Hospitals

As a veterinary care facility, ensuring sharps safety is vital to providing quality care while preventing necessary injuries to clients and animals. Needlestick injuries are common in veterinary care facilities and can cause serious injury and potential loss of time if not handled properly. Knowing how to dispose of your sharps waste is extremely important. Sharps should never be thrown loosely into the trash or toilet.

What Can Be Classified As a Sharp?

A sharp can be defined as an object that is capable of cutting or penetrating the skin and packaging material. 

Some examples include:

  • Scalpels
  • Blades
  • Needles
  • Syringes
  • Broken Glass

In a healthcare setting like an animal hospital or veterinary clinic, sharps waste is a common byproduct. Syringes used for vaccination and/or administration of antibiotics can cause havoc to patients and animals if not disposed correctly. According to the CDC, over 600,000 people are injured annually by improperly discarded needles.

Is Sharps Waste Regulated for Veterinary Clinics?

Yes, as a veterinary clinic or hospital, the same set of regulations and requirements as other healthcare facilities are enforced for sharps waste disposal. Examples of regulatory bodies include;

OSHA Regulations

U.S Department of Labor Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) focus on protecting the health of the workers from the risk of exposure to pathogens. It regulates numerous facets of medical waste, including management of sharps, necessity to hold/store medical waste in containers, labeling the medical waste bags/container, and employee training.

US EPA Regulations

Though EPA no longer plays the key role in association with vet medical waste disposal and management, EPA has active regulations directing emissions, as well as requirements under the FIFRA (Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide) for specific medical waste treatment which employs chemicals for waste disposal.

Veterinary Clinics and animal hospitals producing medical waste must ensure they adhere to the state and federal regulations. Compliance is necessary to manage a safe facility as well as properly packaging sharps waste, documenting and safe transportation.

Top Tips for Compliant Veterinary Waste Disposal

Properly Packaged Containers: Containers must be rigid, leak-proof, puncture-resistant, tamper-proof, and spill-proof. These containers must meet the requirements of DOT for storage and transportation.

Mitigating Medical Waste Risk: Transparency is key to the DNR and the entire process of storing, disposing and transporting veterinary medical waste is essential for compliance. All generated medical or sharps waste must be manifested in a process called ‘cradle to grave’ manifestation, from transportation to destruction.

Safe Transportation: In a veterinary clinic or animal hospital, medical waste exceeding 50 pounds requires a permit which can be costly and time-consuming.@take out the previous sentence Sanpro Waste provides you with peace of mind as we can pick up and transport medical waste in a timely and safe manner.

Partner with a certified medical waste provider

The most important step to take after ensuring that you’re properly storing and disposing of your veterinary clinic or hospital waste is to work with a certified medical waste disposal provider.

Sanpro medical waste is a nationally owned and operated company that provides waste disposal services to nursing homes and many other medical facilities throughout the United States. Our team is composed of highly-trained professionals who will ensure that your waste is removed and disposed of according to state and federal guidelines. Contact us to learn more. 

Contact Sanpro for Sharps Waste Disposal

We are committed to elevating the standards of sharps waste disposal. Our comprehensive solution not only meets but exceeds regulatory requirements, setting a new benchmark for reliability and consistency in the healthcare industry. We help customers save an average of up to 30% off their current medical waste disposal services and OSHA compliance rates.

Our solutions are 99% on-time with no delays to your medical waste management service with full 24/7 access to a dedicated customer representative. Get a free quote today!

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