Time to File Your WI DNR Infectious Waste Annual Report

It’s time to file your WI DNR Infectious Waste Annual Report. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has made many improvements to its electronic filing system so that its even easier for you to submit your infectious waste annual reports for both 2015 and 2016. The deadline to turn this information into the WI DNR needs is December 8, 2017 at 11:59 p.m.

If you have reported before, you will find that the 2015 and 2016 reports will go much quicker. That is because a lot of the information will be already be filled in. Now, all you need to do is simply review it, change contact information where necessary, and add in new waste numbers.

DNR sent an email notice to all reporting contacts regarding the release of the report. If for some reason you didn’t see it, first check your spam folder. Then, if it’s there, be sure to change your filter to add the DNR to your safe senders list. If the DNR email isn’t there, send an email to DNRMedicalWaste@wisconsin.gov and include your facility name and FID number in the subject line and describe any changes in your contact information.  In the meantime, everything you need to know about the report is on the DNR infectious waste annual report web page: http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/HealthWaste/IWReport.html

Use MERI’s Customer Portal When Gathering Infectious Waste Numbers

MERI’s 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.

MERI’s customer portal 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’ve forgotten your user name, try entering your customer account number. Can’t recall your password? Enter your user name and follow the website instructions for resetting your password. If you are still having trouble accessing the portal, don’t hesitate to contact us by phone or email and we’ll be happy to assist you.

Who Needs to Complete a WI DNR Infectious Waste Annual Report?

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, then 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. This is especially true 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. This report also goes by the name medical waste reduction plan.

However, hospitals, clinics and nursing homes will likely have to complete the medical waste reduction plan. This is simply because these organizations tend to have a lot of medical waste. So, it’s important to review past practices and develop new strategies to reduce future waste production. In addition, you’ll also need to review the plan annually and update it at least every five years.

More Information

Still curious about how to file with the WI DNR? Everything you need is on the WI DNR’s Infectious waste annual report web page at http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/HealthWaste/IWReport.html. After you review the tutorials and the line-by-line instructions, and still have questions, send an email to them and they’ll respond during office hours.

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