Medical waste, also known as clinical waste, normally refers to waste products that cannot be considered general waste, produced from healthcare premises, such as hospitals.
Disposal of this waste is an environmental concern, as many medical wastes are classified as infectious or biohazardous and can lead to the spread of infectious disease. Examples of infectious waste include blood, potentially contaminated "sharps" such as needles and scalpels, and identifiable body parts. Infectious waste is often incinerated, and is usually sterilized if it is to be placed in a landfill . Additionally, medical premises produce a variety of waste hazardous chemicals, including radioactive materials. While such wastes are normally not infectious, they may be classified as hazardous wastes, and require proper disposal.
In Europe, wastes are defined by their European Waste Catalogue (EWC) Codes. EWC Codes are 6 digits long, with the first two digits defining the over-arching category of waste, the next two defining the sub-category, and the last two defining the precise waste stream. Clinical waste comes under the "18" codes, for example: "18 01 01" corresponds to healthcare waste (18), from humans (01), that is sharp and not infectious (01).
In the UK, clinical waste and the way it is to be handled is closely regulated . Applicable legislation  includes the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (Part II), Waste Management Licencing Regulations 1994, and the Hazardous Waste Regulations (England & Wales) 2005, as well as the Special Waste Regulations in Scotland.
- List of solid waste treatment technologies
- List of topics dealing with environmental issues
- Toxic waste
- Waste management
- ↑ Medical waste
- ↑ http://www.medical.initial.co.uk/regulations/index.php
- ↑ http://www.netregs.gov.uk/netregs/legislation/287972/?lang=_e
There is no pharmaceutical or device industry support for this site and we need your viewer supported Donations | Editorial Board | Governance | Licensing | Disclaimers | Avoid Plagiarism | Policies