Restaurateurs are always on the alert for red flags that could sink their ratings and bottom lines. But sometimes, the simplest mistake – like not having a place to store used needles – can result in an unfortunate headline. Use these three restaurant sharps disposal tools to help avoid a (bio)hazardous review from a customer, employee or OSHA inspector:

1. Hang Sharps Containers in Restaurant Restrooms

About 14% of Americans today either have a food allergy or diabetes. Many carry an EPI pen, or insulin injection needle, with them at all times in case of an emergency. If someone asked where your sharps disposal container is, could you direct them to one on your premise? Or, could you explain why you don’t have one?

Providing a sharps box means your customers and employees can avoid placing their sharps in the restaurant’s restroom trash, where a staff member can get poked while taking out the bag.

MERI’s sharps disposal system comes with a rigid sharps box to hang in your restroom. It also includes a handy mailback container. When your biohazard insert is full, exchange it with a new insert inside the mailback kit. Then, mail the full insert back to us in the postage paid box.

Just follow the instructions, including signing the manifest, before sending it back via the local US Postal mail carrier. At $79 for the whole system, it’s a bargain compared to a multi-million lawsuit that may be brought forth by an employee or customer if accidentally poked by a needle placed in the trash bin or parking lot. It may also prevent you from a Sharps lawsuit.

2. Use a Mailback Kit to Easily Dispose Full Sharps Containers

It’s never okay to reuse a sharps container located inside a sharps box. The box is filled with needles and bloodborne pathogens, which could spread infection if not properly disposed after use.

A mailback kit makes it easy to switch out the full container with a fresh one. It even comes with a prepaid USPS return shipping label addressed to MERI’s licensed treatment center. Simply follow the instructions to package up the old biohazard mailback container, and drop it off at your local U.S. Post Office or give to your postal carrier.  This video outlines how easy MERI’s mailback kits are to use.

3. Have a Blood Spill Clean Up and Disposal Kit 

Accidents happen. It’s not only important to properly clean up, but also to dispose of infectious waste. MERI’s blood spill clean-up and disposal kit disinfects, documents and disposes after a spill involving blood, vomit, urine or feces.

Place the blood spill kit near your first aid kit. Then it will be easy to grab when cleaning up and collecting the infectious material. The rigid container can also hold glass shards that would otherwise pierce through a typical plastic garbage bag. Read and follow the instructions that come with the kit to ensure you stay safe when cleaning up.Before sending, sign the enclosed manifest. It documents you are properly disposing infectious waste. Then, mail the infectious waste in the postage paid box back to MERI’s treatment center.

Responsible Restaurant Sharps Disposal Tools

Being a responsible restaurateur or business owner means implementing OSHA guidelines to avoid biohazardous accidents. Have a sharps container in your restaurant’s restrooms, as well as blood spill clean-up and disposal kits near your first aid kit. They’ll make it easy for your employees or guests to dispose their sharps or other infectious waste – and even easier for you to take care of it after.

MERI's new Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit

Blood, vomit, urine, feces, or other biohazard waste spills happen everyday on a bus or in a school, lab, manufacturing or business setting. It’s a dirty job but someone has to clean it up.  If you’ve planned ahead, thankfully, you have MERI’s new Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit on hand to do it.

Madison Environmental Resourcing Inc. new Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit disinfects, documents and disposes potentially contaminated infectious waste. This all-in-one, pre-paid postage mail kit offers a total solution when cleaning up and disposing biohazard waste, including sharps or broken glass. It even holds discarded clothing items saturated with blood borne pathogens.

Use MERI’s New Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit To:

  • Remove and disinfect the surface area after a potentially contaminated infectious waste spill such as blood, vomit, urine or feces.
  • Dispose biohazard waste spill or broken glass in biotech, research lab at blood spill after an incident in a manufacturing facility.
  • Document proper disposal of discarded clothing containing blood borne pathogens due to an accident or nose bleed at a school, day care, gym, swimming pool or recreation center.

Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit Is DOT and USPS Certified

Certified by the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the United States Postal Service (USPS), every one of MERI’s Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kits holds up to eight pounds of absorbed waste. Best of all, each kit comes with an exposure incident form to record spill as well as a manifest noting that the infectious material is being properly destroyed at our licensed treatment facility.

What’s In Each Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit?

MERI’s Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit features both clean up and disposal items. 

The Clean Up Items Include:

  • Absorbent Powder Pack (0.75 oz)
  • Scoop & Scraper (1)
  • Disinfectant Surface Wipe (1)
  • Mask with Visor (1)
  • Red Biohazard Waste Bag (1)
  • Pair Latex-Free Exam Gloves (1)
  • Antimicrobial Hand Wipes (2)
  • Exposure Incident Form (1)
  • Absorbent Pad (2)

And, the Disposal Box Items Feature:

  • A rigid 10.3” high x 10.5” wide x 7” deep, 2 gallon Biohazard Container
  • Absorbent Pad
  • Thick Plastic Bag and Zip Tie
  • Manifest to Document Proper Disposal of Potentially Infectious Waste
  • Pre-paid Postage Shipping Box to Send Material to Treatment Facility

Cost-Effective Spill Clean Up and Disposal Solution

MERI’s new Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit is a handy, compliant, cost-effective solution for environmental service, facility or maintenance managers. This kit would especially be helpful to have at:

* Corporate or Retail Locations

* Manufacturing, Biotech, University Research Facilities

* Police, EMT, Government Agencies, Drug-Testing Sites

* School, University Restrooms or First Aid Stations or Emergency Health Services

* Day Care, After School Care, Senior and Recreational Centers

* Dental or Veterinarian Offices

* Nursing Stations, Urgent Care, Long-term Care Facilities

* Chemistry Labs, Gym and Athletic Trainer Facilities

* Airlines, Cruise Ships, School Bus or Charter Coach Tour Operators

* Hotel, Restaurant or Gas Stations

Delivery of Your New Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit 

MERI’s new Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit ships in one to two business days after ordering. Before sending back your prepaid shipping box back to MERI, first sign the manifests. They are located in the plastic label on the side of the box. Next, keep one manifest for your records. Finally, please note that return shipping must be done through the United States Postal Service.

Don’t forget to order another MERI mailback kit before returning yours. That way you can always have a safe place to store your biohazard materials.

Click Here for Video Packaging Instructions

Watch this video or view these packing instructions to see how easy it is to package MERI’s mailback systems back through the United States Postal Service.

 

infectious waste

Are you wondering if it’s time to file your WI DNR Infectious Waste Report? Or even if you need to file this year?

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources’ Infectious Waste Report applies to all Wisconsin infectious waste generators. It’s not just for medical facilities, such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. It verifies that both generators and treatment facilities throughout the state are in compliance with regulatory manifesting requirements.

If your Wisconsin location(s) shipped 50 pounds or more of medical waste to an infectious waste treatment facility in one or more months during the calendar year, you will need to complete the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Infectious Waste Report.

This Infectious Waste Off-Site Treatment report is the first of an annual two-part electronic document within the WI DNR annual Infectious Waste Report. Only hospitals, clinics and nursing homes should complete the second part of the annual filing, also known as the medical waste reduction progress report.

Are You Exempt?

Not sure if you have to file either one or both of documents in the annual WI DNR Infectious Waste Report?

Use this handy worksheet to determine if you are exempt from having to file the infectious waste report with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

Even if you don’t file an infectious waste report, according to WI DNR Annual Reports Exemptions and Records  you should keep on file any of the following:

  • Your infectious waste manifests or records of waste sent off-site for treatment (hospitals, clinics and nursing homes must retain for five years, all others for three years).
  • Your certificates of destruction or treatment (hospitals, clinics and nursing homes must retain for five years, all others for three years).
  • Logs of the amounts sent off-site for treatment and the destination facility.
  • Logs of the amounts generated.
  • Records related to on-site treatment (see s. NR 526.12, Wis. Adm. Code).

Being Exempt In Past Doesn’t Reflect Your Future

Veterinarians, dentists, acupuncturists, tattoo artists, laboratory researchers, manufacturers and small businesses, take note: Just because you may have been exempt from filing the WI DNR Infectious Waste Off-Treatment Report in the past, it doesn’t mean you will be this year — especially if your facility expanded, or had an incident, and generated more medical waste.

Wisconsin funeral home directors also should be aware that they might need to file.  While the WI Regulation’s NR 526.04(5) states: Human tissue that is interred or cremated on site is exempt from reporting”, this doesn’t mean that you are exempt as you may have sharps or other infectious waste.

Just ask yourself: Did 50 pounds or more of infectious waste get removed from my premises during the calendar month? If you answered YES, then an infectious waste off-site treatment report must be filed.

Note that 50 pounds is not an average monthly total in any a calendar year. Whenever 50 pounds or more is removed from the premises for treatment elsewhere, during any month during the calendar year. This is according to manifests, shipping papers or other records.

The DNR has a great list of what is and isn’t infectious waste. You can find it this guide, Basic Infectious Waste Requirements for Generators of Small Amounts.

Medical Waste Reduction Plan

Funeral homes and smaller infectious waste generators are exempt from completing the second part of the Infectious Waste Off-Treatment Report, also known as the medical waste reduction plan.

However, hospitals, clinics and nursing homes will likely have to complete the medical waste reduction plan. This addressees not only previous waste management practices, but also strategies being put into place to reduce your future waste production. The plan needs to be reviewed annually and updated at least every five years.

WI DNR Infectious Waste Report Date

An electronic version of the DNR’s Infectious Waste Annual Report form, first launched in late 2015, asked all generators to submit their infectious waste numbers for 2014.

In 2017, the Wisconsin DNR hopes to catch up by asking for 2015 numbers. Then, shortly after that, 2016 numbers, in order to get everyone up to date, according to Barb Bickford, WI DNR’s Medical Waste Coordinator.

Bickford did not specify a date when the upcoming filing of 2015 numbers will take place.  Backend testing is currently taking place. However, once it goes live, the process should be quicker for repeat filers.

She noted that those who submitted in the past should automatically get an email notifying them when it’s time to file the report. You an also check the DNR’s reporting web page for updates at http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/HealthWaste/IWReport.html

If you’ve had changes in your staff, your facility has changed its name or has a new owner, or if you think that you might need to file for the first time, you should notify the DNR at: dnrmedicalwaste@wisconsin.gov. This will avoid delays of the correct person being notified. And, will save future typing. You won’t have to change pre-populated information.

Reports will be due six weeks from the DNR’s release date.

We’ll Keep You Informed

MERI will keep you informed once the WI DNR’s reporting feature is available.

Our handy customer portal keeps track of your infectious waste numbers and makes it easy to retrieve the information you need to file your reports quickly.

This software allows you to:

  • Retrieve manifests that include cradle-to-grave documentation of infectious waste.
  • Receive a report detailing the total weight of treated waste over a specific date range.
  • Update your contact information.

We’ve already sent every MERI customer a link to the portal along with the required password. If you’re having trouble accessing the portal, please contact us by phone or email and we’ll be happy to assist you.

# # #

preparing for a minor industrial accident

Are you prepared it an accident occurs in your industrial plant? A medical waste mailback kit helps clean up after a minor industrial accident. And, it provides documentation so that you can record everything was not only cleaned up but also properly disposed.  These mailback kits are important because every industrial plant has a legal obligation to develop an accident control plan. As part of this control plan, specific employees must be trained on how to correctly clean up and dispose of blood and the waste generated in an incident.  

One big misconception among many facility managers is that there’s nothing particularly difficult about cleaning up blood following an accident. Most believe it’s as simple as grabbing some washcloths, wiping it up, and tossing the waste in the trash.

Yet, the procedure for cleaning even a small amount of blood is a bit more involved. In fact, not following the correct protocol places your employees at risk, and creates a liability issue for your facility.

The reason why has to do with a federal agency you’re probably familiar with: The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, commonly known as OSHA. Because of the potential pathogens blood carries, OSHA takes workplace accidents – especially those that involve blood – extremely seriously.

So what can you do to keep your employees safe and your facility compliant? Keeping a Medical Waste Mailback kit may be your answer to both.

What is a Biohazard Blood Spill Clean Up & Disposal Kit?

For those who don’t know, a Medical Waste Mailback Kit is a simple way to disinfect, dispose and dispose medical waste through the mail. This includes material absorbed in blood, vomit, urine or feces.

This all-in-one, pre-paid postage mail kit is great to have on hand for an emergency clean up and compliant disposal of an infectious spill in a school, bus, lab, retail or industrial setting. It’s also good for biohazard waste, including sharps or broken glass.

DOT and USPS Certified

This kit is certified by both the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the United States Postal Service (USPS). Each mailback kit holds up to eight pounds of absorbed infectious waste and sharps. Best of all, it comes with a manifest to help meet OSHA regulations to document an accident involving blood borne pathogens.

Using MERI’s mailback system is fairly straightforward. Each kit comes pre-stamped, so you can ship it directly to a medical waste disposal company once the container filled.

MERI’s blood spill and medical waste maiback kits are used in households of diabetics, at nursing homes, or at other medical facilities that regularly produce small amounts of medical waste. Yet, for industrial plants, they can also be vital when an accident arises.

Why Every Industrial Plant Needs a Medical Waste Mail Back Kit

OSHA requires a select few employees – often a manager or safety specialist – to undergo annual bloodborne pathogen training. Part of that training involves learning how to properly and safely clean up blood.

Bloody waste is not like standard garbage. It carries diseases. Saturated bloody waste is medical waste.

Often, medical waste requires a medical waste disposal service to pick up the waste. For small amounts of waste, paying for a service to come to your facility can seem overly expensive.

MERI’s blood spill and medical waste kits are quick to ship, fully compliant with all medical waste disposal and shipping laws, and cost about half that of transportation. They can also be useful beyond accident response. For instance, some industrial plants have a first aid or nurse’s station where a nurse collects bloody materials or administers shots. This kit could provide a simple way for these nurses to dispose this medical waste and needles or other sharp devices.

It’s important to note that if you ever have a larger spill or produce more than four pounds of medical waste per month, you should call a medical waste disposal facility like MERI to handle it. Mailback kits are best for smaller amounts of medical waste.

Still, in an industrial plant, you never know when an injury will arise that suddenly creates small amounts of medical waste. Keep a MERI blood spill or medical waste kit handy so you can safely and lawfully handle the situation when the time comes.

Learn how to easily track, properly handle, and affordably dispose your biohazard or infectious waste.

Download Your
Infectious Waste Compliance Guide