Author Topic: Sharps disposal  (Read 1100 times)

Sharps disposal
« on: April 09, 2021, 01:10:23 pm »
I have to have injections with a pen every two weeks.  After a couple of years I have built up a box full of empties.  I can't find how to get rid of them. 

They did give me a little sharps bin when I first started, but that was full after a couple of months.  Pharmacists and doctors' surgeries don't seem to take them.  In theory the council should but they are impossible to contact - my wife spent half an hour on hold last week. 

Any tips on what to do with them?

Regulator

  • That's Councillor Regulator to you...
Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2021, 01:26:28 pm »
If you're in England, contact your local Clinical Commissioning Group - they may be able to advise you what the local disposal scheme is.  Otherwise it would be worth asking the local district nursing team, as they may know.

Here's the NHS info
Quote from: clarion
I completely agree with Reg.

Green Party Councillor

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2021, 01:53:45 pm »
Your prescription should include a sharps bin.  But if they are unbanned sharps, nowhere is going to be happy to take them.

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2021, 05:33:36 pm »
I have space in my sharps bin BUT my partner Must Not Be Disturbed.

I live within cycling distance.

I'm not too far away. Package them stoutly and pop through my letterbox.

PM me for address.

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2021, 06:36:17 pm »
Pharmacies who do needle exchange schemes may take them off your hands (piggybacking a bit of customer service onto the scheme), but I'm afraid it is the council's responsibility at the end of the day. Your local pharmacy may be able to provide a direct contact number for you, if your council's not too useless, otherwise clinical waste collections generally come under environmental health, I believe.
Back in the saddle :)

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2021, 05:19:29 pm »
Thanks all.  That's given me a few ideas for how to progress.

@Helly very kind of you to offer but I ought be able to get something sorted out here. Will come back if it proves impossible!

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2021, 06:21:03 pm »
I know it's a total kludge!

My suppliers have often sent me more sharps bins than I need and I've been returning half-full bins to stop them building up, which makes me feel a bit guilty! I suspect I'll get another bin, which I don't think I'll need, with my next medication delivery, at the end of May. I could sneak that in your direction too. Kludging and quasi-theft but...

Who supplies/prescribes your injections? Mine are prescribed by Queen Square and supplied by Lloyd's (was BUPA, was Clinovia all from same premises) in Harlow.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2021, 06:37:22 pm »
You could always scatter them on your local NCN route...
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2021, 07:17:48 pm »
Put them into an empty ring-pull drinks can then crush the can and put into the recycling.
I am often asked, what does YOAV stand for? It stands for Yoav On A Velo

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #9 on: April 10, 2021, 07:25:11 pm »
Maybe just buy a sharps bin or two from an online supplier, email your council and await their response...

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #10 on: April 10, 2021, 08:21:54 pm »
I'm interested to hear the outcome of this.
I have a sharps bin full of scalpel blades. Full to the point that both hand are required to lift it.
It hasn't been emptied in the 18 years that I've been here.

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #11 on: April 10, 2021, 09:36:23 pm »
I'm interested to hear the outcome of this.
I have a sharps bin full of scalpel blades. Full to the point that both hand are required to lift it.
It hasn't been emptied in the 18 years that I've been here.

Are your scalpel blades craft or 'medical'?

Non-biohazard sharps would/should be OK for general waste/recycling disposal.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #12 on: April 10, 2021, 10:15:25 pm »
Are your scalpel blades craft or 'medical'?

IME they tend to end up as 'medical' about half the time by accident...
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #13 on: April 10, 2021, 10:58:36 pm »
I ended up using my local needle exchange.
Might be worth a google.

My other half does rehabilitation for hedgehogs, requires the odd injection.

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #14 on: April 11, 2021, 08:22:02 am »
I'm interested to hear the outcome of this.
I have a sharps bin full of scalpel blades. Full to the point that both hand are required to lift it.
It hasn't been emptied in the 18 years that I've been here.

Are your scalpel blades craft or 'medical'?

Non-biohazard sharps would/should be OK for general waste/recycling disposal.
Craft, Helly. Thanks.
I may resort to YOAV's method, as mentioned above.
Only I'll use a steel tin so as to not mix materials.

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #15 on: April 11, 2021, 03:38:18 pm »
I didn't invent it - its a long standing method of getting rid of sharps in a safe (if not necessarily entirely correct way) if you haven't got access to proper i.e. medical sharps disposal*

* also used by a well known cycling cheat to dispose of used EPO syringes but don't take that as an endorsement.
I am often asked, what does YOAV stand for? It stands for Yoav On A Velo

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #16 on: April 11, 2021, 08:13:48 pm »
The process in my area is for a Health Care Professional to complete a referral form and send it to the local Council.
The Council then collects full and sealed sharps boxes and leaves a new box, I think they do this on a weekly or 2 weekly round with the client asked to leave the full box on their doorstep.

I think it's likely to be similar in your area, in which case an email to your GP surgery should set the ball in motion.

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #17 on: April 11, 2021, 09:45:17 pm »
Given the OP is on fortnightly injections he only needs a handful of collections per year. I can put several dozen syringes in a one litre bin.

MikeFromLFE

  • Previously known as Millimole
Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #18 on: April 12, 2021, 09:10:24 am »
In the course of recent redecoration and associated cupboard clearing we discovered Mrs M's sharps box from when she was doing her heparin injections.
Bearing this thread in mind we contacted various persons and ultimately ended up at the local District Council website.
Sigh.
This tells us to contact our GP surgery who will arrange for disposal.
Our first call /was/ to our GP surgery, who had told us to contact the pharmacy.
The pharmacy told us to contact the County Council who pointed us towards the District Council.
Yippee I'm in a vortex.

(I think the people i volunteer for might be able to help)
Too many angry people - breathe & relax.

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #19 on: April 12, 2021, 12:13:46 pm »
Blades I use (scalpel, stanley, also Mrs Ham's broken sewing needles) I fold a piece of tape over the edge and bin in household waste, work of a second, seems a perfectly safe option, am I missing something?

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #20 on: April 12, 2021, 12:24:51 pm »
Blades I use (scalpel, stanley, also Mrs Ham's broken sewing needles) I fold a piece of tape over the edge and bin in household waste, work of a second, seems a perfectly safe option, am I missing something?

I don't think that's safe, sharp edges and points should not be exposed. A bit of tape is not going to stop a blade from injuring someone.

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #21 on: April 12, 2021, 12:27:30 pm »
Sharpen and reuse blades!

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #22 on: April 12, 2021, 12:35:17 pm »
Blades I use (scalpel, stanley, also Mrs Ham's broken sewing needles) I fold a piece of tape over the edge and bin in household waste, work of a second, seems a perfectly safe option, am I missing something?

I don't think that's safe, sharp edges and points should not be exposed. A bit of tape is not going to stop a blade from injuring someone.

Try it, you are wrong.

IME, masking tape, gaffer tape and electrician's tape all work well, but even cellophane tape is ok. Cut a piece of tape longer than the blade edge, place the blade along it and fold up the tape (sticky to sticky) so that the fold is slightly below the blade edge. You can now handle and even grasp this quite safely.

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #23 on: April 12, 2021, 12:51:36 pm »
That is because you know are handling a blade.

Re: Sharps disposal
« Reply #24 on: April 12, 2021, 01:14:07 pm »
Not really. The question is, where is protection against accidental handling needed? My assumption is that it is only until the item is in the garbage collection vehicle, the tape really does provide ample protection for that. If I'm wrong in that assumption (and I'm inviting other opinions), then I might need to re-think. Basically, a taped blade will not puncture the rubbish container it is put in, so is a safe disposal. If you need to consider its life beyond the maw of the truck, then that would not be sufficient, but why would you when there can be so many other equally hazardous items disposed in garbage (eg, shards of glass)