What specific chemicals or chemical processes could render medical/infectious wastes safe/solid waste?
There are currently two types of alternative medical waste technologies that utilize a pesticide registered by EPA's Pesticide Program to treat medical waste, suction canisters/solidifiers and chemical grinders (crusher/slusher/flushers).
Suction canisters are canister systems that utilize encapsulation via polysaccharides or other chains to turn liquid blood into a semi-solid state. Solidifiers decrease the occurrence of splashing, spilling, and aerosolization, and contain an antimicrobial chemical that is used to reduce the potential infectivity of micro-organisms in the wastes. Solidifiers are used primarily to treat blood and body fluids during surgeries. The waste is suctioned into canisters that are disposed of in municipal solid waste landfills.
Chemical Grinders commonly referred to as "crusher/slusher/flushers" use a hammermill or similar device that shreds the waste and reduces it into small fragments. The resulting waste is sprayed with or immersed in an antimicrobial agent for a prescribed contact time. In the final stage, the waste is separated from the wastewater and disposed of in a sanitary sewer system while the remaining treated waste is placed in containers for disposal in municipal solid waste landfills.
The Agency maintains a list of EPA registered Antimicrobial Products for Medical Waste Treatments at http://www.epa.gov/oppad001/chemregindex.htm.
- Topic #: 23002-23499
- Date Created: 4/20/2009
- Last Modified Since: 8/22/2013
- Viewed: 9705