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What to Put in the Sharps Container


Sharps containers are vital for the prevention of infection in healthcare facilities. They must be made of sturdy, puncture-proof plastic with lids that seal properly. They must be clearly labelled showing that they contain hazardous waste.

Practitioners at healthcare facilities regularly put used needles into the sharps containers, but what else is supposed to go in there? Basically, any pointed object that can puncture the skin is considered “sharp”.

  • Suture needles
  • Insulin needles
  • Phlebotomy needles
  • Scalpel blades
  • Lancets for diabetic blood testing
  • Plastic and glass vacutainer tubes
  • Plastic and glass capillary tubes
  • IV catheters
  • Dental files and wires

It’s important for healthcare facilities to institute proper training measures for sharps disposal to ensure safety. Staff must be told not to use sharps buckets for regular waste. This is not only costly but also unsafe because the waste hauling company will then need to separate the waste out.

The FDA has instituted strict sharps disposal guidelines. They state that:

  • Sharps, once used, must be placed in a sharps container
  • These containers must be rigid, puncture-proof plastic
  • Biomedical waste companies such as MET may supply such containers

Don’t let accidents with sharps happen in your facility. Contact MET today for all your biohazard waste disposal needs in the San Diego area. We’ll tailor a sharps waste management program for your needs and budget.