Infectious Waste Disposal
Disposal of infectious waste must be done safely to protect both human health and the environment. Separating it from other types of clinical waste for storage, collection, and removal helps reduce the risk of any cross-contamination or damage to those handling it or the surrounding environment. Arrange safe and efficient infectious waste disposal with Business Waste.
Extra care and precautions should be taken to manage, store, and dispose of any infectious waste your business produces. We can provide you with free infectious waste bins for secure storage – so you only pay for collection by our licensed waste carriers. Call 0800 211 8390 or contact us online for a quick quote.
Fast, Free Quotation
Get a fast FREE quote for your infectious waste disposal
- Free quote within 1 hr
- Any type of infectious waste
- FREE bins and delivery
- We cover all of the UK
Infectious waste refers to any waste products that are infectious by nature. They’re classified as such if they’re contaminated by blood or other bodily fluids that are infectious or have been used by a person or animal with an infection. Examples of infectious waste can be anything from the blood itself to medical gowns covered in infectious bodily fluids.
Typically, infectious waste is produced in healthcare facilities (human and animal) or laboratories. It poses a threat to the environment and the health of those who may come into contact with infectious waste, so must be stored, collected, and disposed of safely.
How is infectious
waste disposed of?
The easiest and safest way to dispose of infectious waste is by incineration. The likes of infectious sharps waste are placed in high-temperature incinerators that reach temperatures of 1,000°C. Some types of infectious waste can go straight to incineration, while others require treatment beforehand. Steam sterilisation is another option for soft infectious waste.
At the treatment and incineration facility the infectious waste will be assessed and sorted, if required, to ensure an appropriate disposal method for its type. It’s important that you don’t include infectious waste with general waste – as it could end up in landfill. Here it may contaminate other waste products, spread infection, or even pollute water sources.
Whenever infectious waste is collected from your business premises, you must make sure it’s disposed of safely and securely. It’s your legal obligation to do this so you comply with the standards set by the Environment Agency. You could face numerous fines and reputational damage for non-compliance.
Start by ensuring your waste is stored appropriately and rendered safe before disposal – which means removing any risks or threats. Then arrange collection by a licensed waste carrier for your infectious waste, so it’s removed and transported to an appropriate facility. Here the process for disposal of infectious waste will depend on its specific type.
How does infectious
waste collection work?
Select your free bins
It’s quick and easy to organise commercial waste collection for your business.
Simply start by telling us the:
- Type of waste you need removing
- Size of bins you require
- Number of bins you want
We’ll provide you with a free quote.
When you’re happy with the type, number, and size of free bins, tell us when you need your bins delivering.
Let us know about any access issues where you want the bins delivering – such as locked gates, access codes and times. We’ll get you up and running in no time.
Fill up your bin
After the free bins arrive at your chosen location, fill them up with the agreed waste type.
Make sure you remain within any weight limits for the specific waste type and bin size.
Get your business waste collected
We’ll arrange waste collection at a time and frequency to suit you and the amount of waste you have.
As featured in…
How to store
When infectious waste isn’t stored or handled appropriately, it poses a significant threat to anybody who may come into contact with it. You should have an infectious waste management plan in place that details how to store infectious waste within your organisation. Employees who handle infectious waste can follow this to stay safe.
Your infectious waste management plan for storage should ensure that:
- PPE items, such as gloves, are worn whenever infectious waste is handled.
- Clinical waste is segregated correctly and stored in the correct infectious waste containers.
- All waste is securely stored at a designated collection point in an area where no unauthorised personnel (such as the general public) can access it.
There are two types of infectious waste bags used to store this type of waste. Your organisation should use these to help separate infectious and non-infectious waste and ensure proper disposal of each type.
Infectious waste facts
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), 85% of waste produced in healthcare facilities classes as general, non-hazardous. This means the remaining 15% of healthcare waste is either infectious, toxic, or radioactive as it’s classified as hazardous. That’s a significant amount, which further makes it clear the need to handle it appropriately.
In the UK the NHS produces 600,000 tonnes of waste per year – though only a small percentage of that is infectious waste. For example, the NHS disposes of 133,000 tonnes of plastic waste annually. However, the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) found in a report of bagged waste in health care settings that 60% was municipal, 39% infectious waste, and just 1% offensive waste.
There are various legislations in place that dictate how infectious waste should be handled, stored, transported, and disposed of within the UK. These include the Environmental Protection Act (1990) and the Carriage of Dangerous Goods Regulations.
We offer a varied range of infectious waste collection programs specifically tailored to your needs. Enjoy free infectious waste bins and bags delivered to your business anywhere in the UK to store your waste safely, before paying for and arranging collection.
Create a waste collection plan that works for your business. We can collect infectious waste on a daily, weekly, or fortnightly basis to suit the amount you produce. Choose from a range of infectious waste bins and bags and order as many as you need to safely store your waste.
Our licensed waste carriers provide peace of mind, all your waste will be handled and disposed of according to relevant legislations and with the environment in mind. Plus, you can speak to our friendly team for expert advice and guidance on all areas of waste disposal, including tips to reduce your waste effectively.
Get a free quote for infectious waste collection and disposal today. Call 0800 211 8390 or contact us online and see how much it could cost your organisation to safely remove any infectious waste, wherever your business is based in the UK.
Read our reviews
James was very helpful and to be honest since starting with this company the service has been excellent.Christeen Norfolk
Is animal waste classed as infectious waste?
Yes, any waste products contaminated by either human or animal blood or bodily fluids class as infectious waste. Any gloves, wipes, bedding, and other such items that come into contact with animal waste may be infectious and should be stored and disposed of like any human infectious waste products. Therefore, lots of waste produced in a vets could class as infectious waste.
What colour bag is used for infectious waste?
Either a yellow or orange coloured clinical waste bag is used to store and dispose of infectious waste. If you use an infectious waste bin such as a sharps bin to store needles, scalpels, and other sharp items contaminated with infectious waste, then you may need to use a sharps bin with a yellow lid.
Which type of waste is highly infectious?
Highly infectious waste includes products contaminated with blood and bodily fluids that must be incinerated due to their highly infectious nature. They must be stored and disposed of in yellow clinical waste bags. Often these include products that have been in heavy, direct contact with an infectious person, such as contaminated:
- Medicated dressings
- Iodine dressings
What is soft infectious waste?
Orange waste bags are used to store soft infectious waste. This includes infectious and potentially infectious waste – items where there’s a risk of spreading infection but it may not have come into direct contact with an infectious substance. These can sometimes be treated or go into an autoclave that uses high pressure steam to disinfect such waste, rather than incinerate it.
Soft infectious waste can include:
Is all clinical waste infectious?
No, lots of clinical waste is non-infectious. It may still be contaminated with blood or bodily fluids, but from someone who has no known or suspected infection. This can include similar products such as wipes, gloves, and swabs, but they should be stored separately from infectious waste for proper disposal.
Get a fast and free quote for infectious waste disposal
Get a fast FREE quote for infectious waste removal
- Free quote within 1 hr
- Any type of clinical infectious waste
- FREE bins and delivery
- We cover all of the UK