Most beach-goers expect to find seashells and minerals washed ashore on Florida’s 1,350 miles of coastline. Vacationers of the Sunshine State, however, have found something else in recent months: medical waste.
Palm Beach’s Medical Waste Problem
According to a report by local news affiliate WTHR, used syringes, medicine and IV drip bags have been washing up on the shores of Palm Beach, Florida over the past six months. Residents and vacationers of the popular beach have encountered medical waste such as this in the past. But the amount of waste discovered has increased in recent months, raising concern among health officials.
Medical waste poses significant health risks to the public as well as environmental concerns. Syringes may contain infection-causing bacteria or viruses, whereas medicine and IV bags contain potent drugs that can enter an unsuspecting person’s body and cause toxicity. Therefore, cleaning up this waste from the city’s beaches has become a top priority for Palm Beach officials.
Cleanup crews are currently sweeping the beaches to remove medical waste and other debris. A local environmental group, Friends of Palm Beach, has also participated in the cleanup effort. And to further protect the public from medical waste dangers, Palm Beach Mayor Gail L. Coniglio has requested assistance from state and federal health organizations.
Florida’s Medical Waste Problem
According to Florida’s Department of Health, some 42,000 businesses in the Sunshine State produce biomedical waste. Whether it’s a family care practice, cosmetic surgery center, tattoo parlor or veterinary clinic, countless businesses produce medical waste. It’s a normal byproduct of their operations. When not properly disposed of, however, this waste ends up in rivers, ponds, waterways and beaches.
It’s unclear where the medical waste in Palm Beach came from, but this isn’t an isolated incident. Florida has experienced many other incidents of medical waste washing ashore. A separate report by WPLG News in 2016, for instance, found that a dental practice was improperly dumping medical waste in dumpsters rather than sending it off to a licensed medical waste disposal company such as Kentucky Medical Waste Removal.
Of course, Florida isn’t the only state with a medical waste problem. Due to its hazardous nature, businesses often struggle to dispose of medical waste, regardless of the state in which they operate. The good news is that there are solutions available to safely dispose of medical waste. And by following proper disposal protocol, businesses can protect the public, the environment and their brand image from harm.
Kentucky Medical Waste Removal
Contract-Free Medical Waste Disposal Keeps Service Providers Focused on Service.
Open and free markets are the bedrock of the American economy. The truth however is that we see throughout US history a number of examples in which some companies, while they may stay narrowly within the limits of the law, still manipulate conditions that they become disadvantageous to the consumer.
AT&T is one of the most notable cases of monopolies in recent history which was broken up by the government, however many people don't realize that other high profile companies have been challenged as well. Microsoft Corp actually lost a case in which was "centered on whether Microsoft was abusing what was essentially a non-coercive monopoly. Microsoft has been challenged by many companies, including Google, over its operating systems' continuing hostility to competitors' software." Source Investopedia.
Free markets require a certain amount of self regulation on the part of any company to operate at peak efficiency. When a particular company strays too far away from a basic sense of fairness it opens itself to scrutiny and questions in which its business methods and practices are evaluated under the lens of the law. Many times, before any antitrust conditions are determined to have been present, civil action will be initiated in the interest of and by disgruntled consumers.
So what does all of this have to do with Medical Waste Contracts? Stericycle Inc was recently in the news having settled a $295M lawsuit based on complaints from customers who accused the company of engaging in a price-increasing scheme that automatically inflated customers' bills up to 18 percent biannually. This is agitated by contracts presented and signed by customers that effectively violated a basic sense of fairness by preventing them from exercising their choice of medical waste disposal provider due to very steep and painful contract cancellation fees.
Contract free medical waste disposal is alive and well in Kentucky and across the US. Numerous alternative local and regional providers operate throughout the United States which provide services based solely on the quality of their services and reliability which, if you think about it, is a wonderful concept; nothing keeps you committed as a customer except for the delivery of an exceptional service and a fair price.
The American Way!
Learn more about contract free medical waste disposal options in Kentucky.
How to Treat Carpules - Best Management Practices
We work with Dental clinics regularly and often find that they are unsure of how their carpules should be handled when sealing their waste for disposal. Here is a quick overview that should provide the guidance needed to make the appropriate choice.
Carpules containing blood should be disposed of as sharps medical waste. They can be placed in a container with other sharps. In Kentucky, if the carpules contain residual anesthetic they should be disposed of in a container properly labeled for transport as pharmaceutical waste to a medical waste incinerator.
Remember, regular medical waste is treated by autoclave; which is high pressure steam sterilization. Because carpules that have anesthetic still in them they should be treated as pharmaceutical waste, incineration is required.
Although this may create an additional expense for the generator properly handling your various medical waste types protects you and your waste hauler.
For more questions regarding your sharps and medical waste call 859 780-2267.
More information about the proper treatment of carpules from the United States Department of Labor.
If you need competent medical waste disposal service in Kentucky contact us.
Selecting a provider to handle your medical/ bio-hazard/ sharps waste can be daunting. If you are like most you'll find at least a half dozen options in your area. Before making a selection consider this:
In summary, don't take chances with your hard earned profits. Being able to trust your medical waste removal provider includes more than just compliance. You should also be able to trust that you are being dealt with in an honest and transparent way too. Patterns of complaints against any medical waste disposal company can be very costly to your business if ignored.
You can learn more about sharps disposal and medical waste disposal companies in the Lexington Kentucky at www.bbb.org/lexington/
It's always helpful to know the statutes for medical waste in your state. Here are the laws and regulations that we follow to keep our customers and our business compliant in Kentucky.
Kentucky Statutes and Resources for Medical Waste
Biomedical waste is any kind of waste containing infectious (or potentially infectious) materials. It may also include waste associated with the generation of biomedical waste that visually appears to be of medical or laboratory origin (e.g., packaging, unused bandages, infusion kits, etc.), as well research laboratory waste containing biomolecules or organisms that are restricted from environmental release. As detailed below, discarded sharps are considered biomedical waste whether they are contaminated or not, due to the possibility of being contaminated with blood and their propensity to cause injury when not properly contained and disposed of. Biomedical waste is a type of biowaste.
Biomedical waste may be solid or liquid. Examples of infectious waste include discarded blood, sharps, unwanted microbiological cultures and stocks, identifiable body parts (including those as a result of amputation), other human or animal tissue, used bandages and dressings, discarded gloves, other medical supplies that may have been in contact with blood and body fluids, and laboratory waste that exhibits the characteristics described above. Waste sharps include potentially contaminated used (and unused discarded) needles, scalpels, lancets and other devices capable of penetrating skin.
Biomedical waste is generated from biological and medical sources and activities, such as the diagnosis, prevention, or treatment of diseases. Common generators (or producers) of biomedical waste include hospitals, health clinics, nursing homes, medical research laboratories, offices of physicians, dentists, and veterinarians, home health care, and morgues or funeral homes. In healthcare facilities (i.e., hospitals, clinics, doctor's offices, veterinary hospitals and clinical laboratories), waste with these characteristics may alternatively be called medical or clinical waste.
Biomedical waste is distinct from normal trash or general waste, and differs from other types of hazardous waste, such as chemical, radioactive, universal or industrial waste. Medical facilities generate waste hazardous chemicals and radioactive materials. While such wastes are normally not infectious, they require proper disposal. Some wastes are considered multihazardous, such as tissue samples preserved in formalin.