A look at New Hampshire medical waste requirements.
In the state of New Hampshire, medical waste is part of a broader category of infectious waste, which is regulated by the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services.
According to the state’s fact sheets, infectious waste is defined as any waste that “…may cause or significantly contribute to an increase in mortality or an increase in serious irreversible or incapacitating reversible illness, or pose a substantial present or potential hazard to human health or the environment when improperly treated, stored, transported, disposed of or otherwise managed.”
On this list of infectious waste is cultures and stocks of infectious agents, pathological wastes, waste human blood and blood products, sharps waste, and laboratory waste.
Storage of medical waste must adhere to the following rules:
- Labeled conspicuously in a legible manner with the words “infectious waste,” or “biohazard waste,” or with the universal biohazard symbol
- Waste cannot be stored at room temperature for more than 72 hours
- Packaging must be strong enough as not to spill contents
Medical waste must be treated prior to disposal, but New Hampshire does not specifically outline which treatment options are preferable. Standard treatments usually include incineration or autoclaving, or other chemical methods.
Unlike other states, New Hampshire does not require medical waste transporters to carry manifests or special licensing, but instead outlines that haulers must adhere to federal Department of Transportation hazardous materials regulations.
While the state regulations exist to protect the environment, New Hampshire also adheres to federal regulations per OSHA, as New Hampshire is one of 26 states covered entirely by the federal OSHA program. OSHA rules dictate how generators handle medical/infectious waste, which includes the management of sharps and containment of medical waste.
It is up to medical waste generators to fully understand state and federal laws to ensure compliance and to protect the communities they serve. Hiring a medical waste disposal company removes the complications from the disposal process and helps facilities better understand local laws for optimal compliance and protection.
Learn how other states handle medical waste requirements.
- 3 Ways to Save On Medical Waste Removal
- Getting to Know the Common Medical Waste Agencies and Their Roles: CDC, EPA, DOT, OSHA
- Avoid Medical Waste Risks in the Workplace
- Top 5 Medical Waste Violations: Is Your Facility Guilty?