Proper disposal of all medical waste generated in a healthcare facility is key to patient safety. There are three key aspects to look for when entering any examination room or physician office.
1. Is the medical sharps container in a proper location? All medical waste containers should be placed in an area that is offset to the patient. The most suitable place for the container is mounted on the wall or in a lockable container.
2. The medical sharps container has hand protection. This feature on the medical sharps container prevents hands from entering the container. This is particularly important for young patients waiting in an examination room.
3. Make sure the medical sharps container is not full. A fill line should be noticeable on the front of the container. If the needles are close or above the fill-line improper disposal and storage of the medical needles will occur. This container will need removal/disposal.