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Sharps DisposalQ. How to properly dispose of them?
Q. Why do we have sharps? 
Q. Where should used sharps be placed?
Q. Where can I get a sharps container?
Q. What should be done with full sharps containers? 


Q. How to properly dispose of them?

The disposal of used sharps is a public safety issue that concerns all of us. A ‘sharp’ is any object that can pierce, puncture or cut the skin. Lancets, pen needles, syringes, knives, scalpels, razors, scissors or broken glass are all examples of sharps.

Q. Why do we have sharps?
Sharps are particularly important in managing diabetes. Lancets are used to poke the finger or arm for blood glucose tests. Pen needles in insulin pens deliver insulin into the body. Syringes offer another way to deliver insulin.

Q. Where should used sharps be placed?
Used sharps should always be placed in an approved sharps container, never in with your garbage or recycling. Sharps containers are made of hard puncture-resistant plastic, usually marked with a biohazard symbol.

Q. Where can I get a sharps container?
Ask at your local pharmacy. There may be a nominal charge to obtain these containers. However, there are a number of pharmacies that will provide their customers with a sharps container free of charge.

To obtain a sharps container or for more information on the proper and safe disposal of used sharps, check with your local pharmacy.

Q. What should be done with full sharps containers?
Sharps containers should only be filled to the three-quarter mark before being sealed with the lid provided. Once it has been sealed, never try to re-open the container. The sealed container should be placed in a plastic bag and taken to a local pharmacy for disposal. Ask whether your pharmacy offers this service, since not all are set up with the system.

There are several pharmacies in Medicine Hat that have this medical waste disposal program in place. Some pharmacies will provide this service free of charge, however, it is costly to disintegrate used sharps.

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Last updated: 4/15/2013 10:46:50 AM