Regulated Medical Waste 101: Blood Banks

Aside from hospitals, did you know that there are several other types of facilities that produce medical waste? We have discussed quite a bit about regulated medical waste (RMW) and how it pertains to long-term care institutions, as well as funeral homes and laboratories. Blood banks are one of the least talked about facilities when it comes to RMW, so here’s a bit of the lowdown on how MedXWaste services those facilities that collect blood.

To recap what RMW is, this is medical waste that includes blood-borne pathogens, pathological and anatomical waste, human blood and blood products, cultures and stocks of infectious agents, sharps such as needles, and contaminated animal carcasses, body parts, and bedding, just to name a few.

Blood banks are required to follow a stringent set of rules when it comes to collecting, storing, and removing blood from their facilities. All blood centers nationwide are monitored under the regulatory guidance of the Food and Drug Admnistration (FDA).

If you’ve ever donated blood, then you know that the procedure entails an initial exam which requires a small blood test. This simple procedure produces medical waste in the form of a sharp that has come into contact with blood, which as stated, is considered RMW. Of course, once a volunteer has been given the all clear to donate, there are needles, tubes, catheters, collection bags – all of which will deal with a bodily fluid (blood) and which, of course, needs proper handling and disposal.

The FDA recommends a two-step process for disposing of sharps. After use, sharps should be placed in a sharps container immediately so that there is no risk to staff or patients. Facilities should then rely on a certified medical waste removal company, like MedXWaste, to deal with the sharps and medical waste that has been produced.

Blood tubes require different disposal since the potential for breakage exists with these materials. A puncture-resistant container is necessary, of which can be acquired through MedXWaste directly.

MedXWaste is a full-service provider of cost-effective, convenient and environmentally-sensitive solutions for the proper management of medical waste and used healthcare products for blood banks and beyond. Call for a quote today.

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