The “Ins & Outs” of Sharps Disposal Containers

Proper handling of sharps can prevent injury and reduce the risk of infection. All of us use sharps containers on a daily basis. As long as we have a container to dispose of our sharps we are in compliance, right? Well, maybe. There are four main criteria for the safe usage of sharps disposal containers: functionality, accessibility, visibility and accommodation.

1. Functionality refers to the containers remaining functional during their usage. The containers should be durable, and puncture resistant. The sides and bottom must be leak proof. Sharps containers must be closable by means of a lid, flap or door or other closing device under normal use imposed during storage, handling and transport within the facility. However, sharps disposal containers are not typically designed for high and low temperature conditions. So it is not recommended to place/store them inside a cold chamber such as a cryostat or place them in an oven or on a hotplate.

2. Accessibility means having easy access to the waste container in order to permit the safe disposal of sharps. The opening should be easy to operate and be designed to minimize any catching or snagging of items placed in the container. The sharps disposal containers should be placed within arms reach with no obstacles between the site of use and the container. The containers should also be placed below eye level of 95% of adult female workers. The disposal device opening should be identifiable and accessible to the user and should facilitate one-handed disposal. The sharps container should be maintained in an upright position during use with no danger of being knocked over or spilled. The placement of sharps containers, as well as the measures used to maintain them in an upright position during use, must be based on the site-specific hazard assessment of the area of intended use.

3. Visibility refers to the container being easily recognizable as a hazard. The color of the container (red) and /or the hazard warning label should imply danger and be visible to the user. The fill capacity of the container should be easily observable by the user and there should be sufficient lighting to determine if any sharp objects are protruding from the container. The containers should be replaced routinely and not over filled. Sharps containers must be closed before disposal to prevent spillage. A secondary container appropriately labeled or color-coded and constructed to contain all contents can be used if there is a chance of leakage from the primary sharps container. Containment must prevent leakage during handling, storage, transport, or shipping.

4. Accommodation is a measurement of ease of assembly, operation and storage. Containers should be simple to use and manufacturers should provide recommended user training information. Sharps disposal containers that are reusable must not be opened, emptied, or cleaned manually in any manner that would expose workers to the risk of sharps injury.

Reference:

  1. OSHA’s bloodborne pathogen standard 29 CFR 1910.1030, sect.(g)(1)(I)(C) &(E)
  2. OSHA’s bloodborne pathogen standard 29 CFR 1910.1030, sect.(d)(4)(iii)(A)
  3. FDA 21 CFR 860.3 Class III medical devices
The 15 Jobs That Are Most Damaging To Your Health

The 15 Jobs That Are Most Damaging To Your Health

Some jobs intrinsically have more health risks than others. A nurse working in a hospital is far more likely to catch an infectious disease than a lawyer working in an office.

To rank the most unhealthy jobs in America, we used data from the Occupational Information Network (O*NET), a U.S. Department of Labor database full of detailed information on occupations.

In order to analyze jobs by their impact on workers’ health, we took O*NET measures of six health risks in each of the 974 occupations in the database: exposure to contaminants; exposure to disease and infection; exposure to hazardous conditions; exposure to radiation; risk of minor burns, cuts, bites, and stings; and time spent sitting, since studies show that frequent inactivity shortens your lifespan. O*NET scores these factors on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


15. Refuse and Recyclable Material Collectors

Overall unhealthiness score: 55.0

What they do: Collect and dump refuse and recyclable materials into trucks.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to contaminants: 97

Time spent sitting: 69

Exposure to disease and infections: 63

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


14. Nuclear Equipment Operation Technicians

 

Overall unhealthiness score: 55.2

What they do: Operate equipment used for the release, control, or utilization of nuclear energy to assist scientists in laboratory or production activities.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to radiation: 89

Exposure to hazardous conditions: 77

Exposure to contaminants: 65

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


13. Medical, Clinical, and Cardiovascular Technologists and Technicians

 

Overall unhealthiness score: 55.3

What they do: Perform complex medical laboratory tests for diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to disease and infections: 96

Exposure to hazardous conditions: 69

Exposure to contaminants: 68

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


12. Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers

Overall unhealthiness score: 55.7

What they do: Pilot and navigate the flight of fixed-wing, multi-engine aircraft, usually on scheduled air carrier routes, for the transport of passengers and cargo.

Top three health risks:

Time spent sitting: 93

Exposure to radiation: 73

Exposure to contaminants: 68

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


11. Derrick Operators, Oil and Gas

Overall unhealthiness score: 56.0

What they do: Rig derrick equipment and operate pumps to circulate mud through a drill hole.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to contaminants: 100

Exposure to minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings: 93

Exposure to hazardous conditions: 91

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


10. Surgical Technologists

Overall unhealthiness score: 57.3

What they do: Assist in operations, under the supervision of surgeons, registered nurses, or other surgical personnel.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to disease and infections: 82

Exposure to contaminants: 81

Exposure to hazardous conditions: 59

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


9. Stationary Engineers and Boiler Operators

Overall unhealthiness score: 57.7

What they do: Operate or maintain stationary engines, boilers, or other mechanical equipment to provide utilities for buildings or industrial processes.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to contaminants: 99

Exposure to hazardous conditions: 89

Exposure to minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings: 84

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


8. Water and Wastewater Treatment Plant and System Operators

Overall unhealthiness score: 58.2

What they do: Operate or control an entire process or system of machines, often through the use of control boards, to transfer or treat water or wastewater.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to contaminants: 97

Exposure to hazardous conditions: 80

Exposure to minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings: 74

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


7. Immigration and Customs Inspectors

Overall unhealthiness score: 59.3

What they do: Investigate and inspect people, common carriers, goods, and merchandise, arriving in or departing from the U.S. or between states to detect violations of immigration and customs laws and regulations.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to contaminants: 78

Exposure to disease and infections: 63

Exposure to radiation: 62

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


6. Podiatrists

Overall unhealthiness score: 60.2

What they do: Diagnose and treat diseases and deformities of the human foot.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to disease and infections: 87

Exposure to radiation: 69

Time spent sitting: 61

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


5. Veterinarians and Veterinary Assistants/Technologists

Overall unhealthiness score: 60.3

What they do: Diagnose, treat, or research diseases and injuries of animals and perform medical tests in a laboratory environment for use in the treatment and diagnosis of diseases in animals.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to disease and infections: 81

Exposure to minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings: 75

Exposure to contaminants: 74

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


4. Anesthesiologists, Nurse Anesthetists, and Anesthesiologist Assistants

Overall unhealthiness score: 61.8

What they do: Administer anesthetic or sedation during medical procedures, using local, intravenous, spinal, or caudal methods or administer anesthetic, adjuvant, or accessory drugs under the direction of an anesthesiologist.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to disease and infections: 94

Exposure to contaminants: 79

Exposure to radiation: 71.8

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


3. Flight Attendants

Overall unhealthiness score: 62.3

What they do: Provide personal services to ensure the safety, security, and comfort of airline passengers during flight. Greet passengers, verify tickets, explain use of safety equipment, and serve food or beverages.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to contaminants: 88

Exposure to disease and infections: 77

Exposure to minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings: 69

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


2. Dentists and Dental Hygienists/Assistants and Dental Lab Technicians

Overall unhealthiness score: 62.9

What they do: Examine, diagnose, and treat diseases, injuries, and malformations of teeth and gums. May treat diseases of nerve, pulp, and other dental tissues affecting oral hygiene and retention of teeth. May fit dental appliances or provide preventive care.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to disease and infections: 87.8

Exposure to contaminants: 76.2

Time spent sitting: 73.6

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.


1. Histotechnologists and Histologic Technicians

Overall unhealthiness score: 63.8

What they do: Prepare histologic slides from tissue sections for microscopic examination and diagnosis by pathologists.

Top three health risks:

Exposure to hazardous conditions: 94

Exposure to contaminants: 91

Exposure to disease and infections: 75

The ranking is based on data from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Information Network (O*NET). We averaged each occupation’s scores across six categories of health risks — exposure to contaminants, disease and infection, hazardous conditions, radiation, risk of minor injuries, and time spent sitting — for an overall unhealthiness score on a scale from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating an increased health risk.

View the original posting at Business Insider