There are several types of clinical waste, and each comes with their own minefield of laws and legislation on waste protection. These laws change frequently and become more and more stringent.

One of the latest legislative changes is about plaster. Prior to April 2009, waste containing less than 10% gypsum should not be disposed of separately from other biodegradable waste. But the law has now changed. Now, any amount of gypsum waste found in landfills can be prosecuted by environmental agencies in the UK.

Dental examination models contain gypsum which, when disposed of with other biodegradable waste, can produce a toxic hydrogen sulphide gas that is harmful to the environment. This legislative change means that when disposing of your dental study models, you need to be aware of these legal changes and make sure that you fully comply with them.

When disposing of your dental study models, it is crucial that you adhere to the proper protection laws and directives that prohibit disposal in commercial waste. Lots of dental waste contains mercury, which is also controlled when it comes to waste disposal.

Dentists are not the only clinical therapists who need to dispose of their waste carefully. Organizations requiring the disposal of diapers and the disposal of incontinence, prescription and controlled drug collection, disposal of sharp substances such as hypodermic needs, scalps and leaves, disposal of ophthalmic or pharmaceutical waste must all comply with strict waste disposal regulations.

You will need to ensure that when disposing of your waste, you must comply with the Environmental Protection Act 1990, The Controlled Waste Regulations 1992 and the Hazardous Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2005 - so any kind of clinical waste collection and disposal does not constitute a threat to the environment or any person.

There are many strict legal obligations that you must fulfill in commercial premises. It may be that instead of choosing to handle the waste management process internally, you choose to use an outsourced waste management company to dispose of your clinical waste

You must ensure that the person removing your waste is either a local municipality, a registered airline or has a license to dispose of waste. You are responsible for ensuring that your waste is disposed of properly and must ask for proof from your waste contractor that they are an authorized person.

So to answer the original question, disposing of clinical waste is very important and something you need to take seriously. To ensure that you adhere to the strict rules and regulations, it may be worth considering outsourcing your clinical disposal to a reputable waste management company.

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