Business Waste
No. 1 for Clinical Waste Disposal

Clinical Waste Disposal Guidelines

There are many types of clinical waste, including those that may be hazardous, infectious, and offensive. As it can be dangerous to human health and the environment, it’s therefore essential you dispose of it correctly – whatever kind of clinical waste your organisation produces. Safely managing this waste ensures it doesn’t pose an infection risk.

While there’s no single clinical waste legislation that covers everything, health providers need to consider the health and safety regulations surrounding clinical waste. There are various clinical waste regulations you need to comply with if your business produces any clinical waste. Plus, you need to follow environmental, waste, and transport regulations.

Easily understand the clinical waste regulations in place relevant to its storage, collection, and disposal with these clinical waste guidelines.

Understand clincal waste regulations in the UK
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What legislation covers 
clinical waste disposal?

Healthcare waste is any waste produced after a healthcare procedure, which can be hazardous. The UK has introduced many regulations that cover clinical waste disposal over the years. Each of these informs healthcare providers on how to manage such waste safely, protecting both the public and the environment.

This clinical waste disposal legislation isn’t confined to just medical waste though. It covers a range of issues, such as packaging and transport, treatment, and the health and safety of employees.

What is the 
Environmental Protection Act 1990?

The Environmental Protection Act is a piece of legislation first introduced in 1990. It sets out ways to manage waste that could pollute the land, water, and air – or harm human health. It imposes a duty of care on all businesses who produce or dispose of waste, instructing them to do so safely.

This is the main legislation that governs clinical waste disposal, as it can be hazardous and infectious, which can pollute soil, air, and water sources if it ends up in landfill. Failure to dispose of clinical waste without a waste management licence or doing so in a way that harms the environment or human health breaches this act.

It also contains guidance on litter, statutory nuisances, and the control of certain substances. Using our services at Business Waste ensures compliance, as your clinical waste will be collected and removed by licensed waste carriers.

It imposes a duty of care on all businesses who produce or dispose of waste

What are the 
Controlled Waste Regulations 2012?

This act was introduced in 2012 to define certain types of waste. It classes any industrial, commercial, or household waste as controlled waste. This means they’re subject to the Environmental Protection Act 1990. Waste that isn’t classed as controlled includes sewage and septic tank sludge.

As clinical waste produced by your organisation is a form of commercial waste, its handling and disposal must follow these regulations. The Controlled Waste Regulations 2012 also ensures the correct documentation is held by those involved in disposing the likes of clinical waste.

What are the Hazardous 
Waste Regulations 2005?

The Hazardous Waste Regulations 2005 set out guidelines to control and track hazardous waste, which covers various types of clinical waste – such as sharps and anatomical waste. It deals with waste considered to pose a high risk to the environment or human health that needs handling or treating in a special way.

The List of Waste Regulations 2005 details hazardous waste types, which includes the likes of cytotoxic and cytostatic medicines, chemicals, and solvents. Under these regulations, the movement of hazardous waste is controlled by a documentation system. These regulations also prevent mixing hazardous substances and waste types to avoid cross-contamination.

It details clinical waste guidelines on labelling, record keeping, and monitoring hazardous waste for every party involved – from the business that produces it to those responsible for transporting and disposing of it. Storing your hazardous clinical waste in the right type and colour of clinical waste bags and bins before collection can help your business operate in line with these regulations.

Learn about the types of hazardous waste

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What are the 
Carriage of Dangerous Goods Regulations 2019?

The Carriage of Dangerous Goods Regulations affect how clinical waste is moved around – usually from your business premises to a recycling, incineration, or other form of disposal facility. This act covers dangerous goods that are transported and how to manage the risk of spills, which can result in hazards such as environmental damage, chemical burns, and sometimes fire.

Transportation of clinical waste by rail or road is regulated by the Carriage of Dangerous Goods Regulations. Anyone transporting such waste must be ADR trained to ensure they’re knowledgeable in how to transfer it safely. These regulations must be followed by healthcare providers who transport clinical waste for disposal.

What are Statutory 
Duty of Care Regulations?

The Environmental Protection Act 1990 places a duty of care on businesses that deal with controlled waste – such as clinical waste. These regulations aim to guide the safe management of waste to protect the environment and human health. They apply to anyone who imports, produces, keeps, or disposes of controlled waste, including clinical waste.

Waste managers have a duty of care to ensure the waste they deal with doesn’t harm anyone or anything and is disposed of properly. It’s a legal requirement and the Waste Duty of Care Code of Practice provides guidelines of what to do to meet your legal duty of care obligations.

Businesses have a duty of care when dealing with controlled clinical waste

What is meant by the 
safe management of clinical waste?

Healthcare waste managers must follow the government legislation mentioned above and the Healthcare Technical Memorandum (HTM) 07-01 to ensure clinical waste is dealt with safely. You must correctly segregate and classify different types of healthcare waste to ensure it goes to the right place for storage and treatment. You should also also assess the results of the waste audit at regular intervals.

Clinical waste must be inspected at the waste facility to ensure the contents of the container match what was expected. Each type of clinical waste is coded to detail the type of waste and appropriate waste management method. In England, some waste is known as offensive hygiene waste and is sorted into yellow bags with a black stripe.

You need to provide justification if this waste will be used at an alternative treatment plant. For infectious healthcare waste, chemical or heat-based disinfection can be used as an alternative to incineration. However, this waste should not contain any chemicals, medicines, or anatomical waste.

Healthcare waste managers must follow government legislation and the Healthcare Technical Memorandum (HTM) 07-01

What are clinical waste guidelines to 
store, segregate, and handle clinical waste?

There are measures in place for the storage, segregation, and handling of healthcare and clinical waste. Firstly, you can’t store individual containers of waste cannot loose. Bagged waste must be stored in fully enclosed and leak-proof containers such as carts. Rigid waste containers should be in good condition, sealed and handled in an upright position.

Clinical waste should be located away from sensitive perimeters and watercourses for public safety. It must be placed in a security-protected area. Anatomical waste must be stored in refrigerated units unless they will be onsite for under 24 hours. Offensive waste must be stored in a secure building in secure bulk containers.

Clinical waste facilities should be operated in a way that minimises any waste handling. Overloading or puncturing waste should be avoided, and they should be stored according to the waste type and destination. It’s important that these clinical waste regulations are followed at all times, to protect the environment and human health.

Comply with clinical waste 
regulations with Business Waste

Ensure your clinical waste disposal procedure is compliant with all relevant regulations by using our services for your collection and disposal. We can get rid of all types of clinical waste and create a management plan that meets your needs. Our licensed waste carriers will collect and transport your waste to an appropriate facility for disposal in line with clinical waste disposal regulations.

Get a free quote for clinical waste collection and disposal. Call 0800 211 8390 and speak to one of our expert team, who can advise and answer any questions around clinical waste disposal guidelines.

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Learn more about 
clinical waste

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Get a fast and free clincial waste disposal quote

Get a fast FREE quote for your clinical waste

  • Free quote within 1 hr
  • Any type of clinical waste
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  • We cover all of the UK