The medical industry calls for sanitary conditions, safety standards, and regulations. These regulations encompass everything from supplies to waste disposal. Syringes and needles are essential medical equipment that must be disposed of competently.
Sharps containers are convenient for storing syringes. Understanding what each one does and which one to use when dealing with medical sharps is critical to protecting yourself and your patients. Let’s get introduced to an overview of the various types of containers available as well as their purpose.
What Is a Sharps Container?
Types of Sharps Containers
There are multiple sorts of sharps containers available, and the type you choose will depend on your work settings and location, as well as the specific procedures followed in your facility. Here are the four main types of sharps containers and what you should put in each one:
- Safer Needle Containers - Needles that may have been infected are always placed in safer containers. Safer needle containers have a bright yellow color that makes them easy to spot. Sharps containers feature a lid-sealed inner seal. The lid increases container pressure, trapping sharp constituents within and making removal difficult.
- Safer Syringe Containers - The safer syringe containers are colored red and blue that can be used to hold and protect syringes that have been used with contaminated or potentially infectious material such as blood, safer syringe containers are your best bet.
- Sharps Discard Containers - Sharps containers should be utilized to store contaminated sharp objects. They are usually blue or white in color. These should not contain used gloves or medical waste. Contaminating the receptacle/bin itself has the potential to spread disease.
- Blood Disposal Container - Blood disposal containers are red containers used for blood samples. Since blood is currently contaminated, having a seal inside the container is unnecessary. This container is designed for one-time use only, so it’s crucial to follow the instructions for cleaning and disinfecting the container before discarding it.
Where to get Sharps Containers
Sharps containers can be purchased locally in New England. In Massachusetts, they are available through CVS and Walgreens. Sharps containers are available in these pharmacies alongside drugs and medical supplies. In Connecticut, Stewardship Rx supplies sharps containers. New England residents can also buy them on the web via ecommerce sites like Amazon.
When Should Medical Companies Throw Away Sharps Containers?
There are a few instances when medical companies must get rid of sharps containers quicker than usual. It’s when the containers have visible blood or other bodily fluids; or if they were used during a procedure in which blood or bodily fluids might have been present. These occurrences may involve surgery or a blood draw.
When medical companies throw away sharps containers, they must do so in a way that complies with regulations. They must ensure that the containers are disposed of properly, with the contents discarded accordingly.
When it comes to sharp blades and needles, it’s essential to dispose of everything the right way. You can achieve this by employing the suitable types of containers available for sharp materials. These receptacles are "sharps safe” and necessary for safety and cleanliness in the medical arena. They prevent injury to both patients and healthcare workers and guard against potential lawsuits due to negligence in the disposal of sharp clinical items.
As with everything else, it’s always better to be safe than sorry when handling sharp materials. Reach out to us today for more information on medical waste management. We’ll work diligently to discuss sharps disposal with you.