Running a care home isn’t as easy as one may imagine it to be. Apart from ensuring the proper safety of all your residents and staff, providing for their every need, and taking care of residents with severe medical conditions, you also need to ensure compliance with local regulations for waste disposal. The waste of care homes may be divided into several categories, but the NHS also categorizes certain waste types as medical waste and this would require special consideration before being disposed of. To help make the process easier for you, let’s go over some essential waste disposal techniques for care home medical disposal:

Types of Medical Waste from Care Homes in the UK

Before going over the exact techniques for waste disposal, let’s go over the categories of medical waste you may encounter in your care home to make segregation easier.

Sharps Waste

Sharps waste is probably the most common type of medical waste that you may encounter at your care home. It must contain everything that is a sharp material, with the exception of sharps that have come in contact with other hazardous waste materials on this list.

Radioactive Waste

Radioactive waste is not quite common in care homes, but it does get produced by residents undergoing radiotherapy. The bodily waste, clothing items, and other personal waste from these residents would be considered radioactive waste and it must be stored separately. While it is possible to have your contractor come and collect this waste, it is more advisable to have it done via the doctor’s office that is conducting the radiotherapy.

Infectious Waste

Infections have the potential to spread among residents and infectious waste can aid this spread if not properly stored and disposed of. All waste materials that have come in contact with an infected person must be discarded separately. This also includes the sharps that may have come in contact with the infected person.

Offensive Waste

Offensive waste is another common waste category at care homes. It includes materials such as adult diapers, sanitary pads, and other waste materials with an offensive or unpleasant odour. This waste is usually not considered hazardous but must be discarded separately from your general waste due to its offensive nature.

Pharmaceutical Waste

Unused or expired pharmaceuticals are also rather common in a care home environment. Depending on the kind of pharmaceuticals used, the waste can be considered hazardous or safe. However, it is advisable to consider all the pharmaceuticals safe by default unless advised otherwise by your contractor.

Essential Waste Disposal Techniques for Care Home Medical Waste

Now that you understand the categories of waste materials in care homes and their segregation, let’s go over some essential techniques that will help you ensure compliance.

  • Segregate the waste as soon as it is produced to avoid cross-contamination.
  • Purchase compliant bins and bags from your contractor in bulk so you never run out of them when necessary.
  • Try to get your residents involved in the process so things are easier on your staff.
  • Manage a more frequent schedule with your contractor to prevent infectious waste and radioactive waste materials from being in your vicinity for a long.
  • Hire a contractor you trust and can rely on to be on time.

Final Thoughts

Ensuring compliance with local waste disposal regulations isn’t always easy. If you’re on the lookout for professional waste disposal services, please feel free to get in touch with our team at Trikon.

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