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Chemotherapy Waste

Chemo waste
Chemotherapy waste disposal is managed under state and federal regulations. This is to protect all parties involved from accidental exposure to the chemicals. The drugs are classified under the Federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. Nine of the drugs are listed as hazardous waste pharmaceuticals. These must be managed as hazardous rather than medical waste and must be managed by a hazardous waste company providing that they get incinerated.

Of course, there are many chemo drugs apart from these nine that haven’t yet been assessed and are therefore not listed as hazardous waste products. Aside from this, many states stipulate that all chemo drugs are handled as hazardous waste. Healthcare facilities need to find out what is correct for their state. They must have correct containers to segregate the waste and keep it out of red bags, sharps bins and the normal trash.

Chemo containers that contain residual amounts only like empty IV bags and medicine vials are put into yellow containers. These are labelled “Chemotherapy Waste” or “Incinerate Only.” They can be managed by waste management companies as long as they get incinerated.

Bulk chemo waste, such as containers that are not empty like partially used IV bags or vials, gets put into black containers that are labeled “Hazardous Pharmaceutical Waste.”

Correct waste segregation is vital for protecting your employees and the environment from exposure. Provide employee training to ensure they know that chemotherapy waste must never be thrown into red bags..