Reduce Public Health Risks by Proper Disposal of Household Medical Sharps

May 29, 2012 at 1:05 pm Leave a comment

Reduce Public Health Risks by Proper Disposal of Household Medical Sharps

Waukesha (WI) – May 29, 2012 – ReCommunity Recycling, the operator of the Waukesha County Materials Recycling Facility, has reported an increase of needles disposed of in plastic jugs set out for recycling.  When residents do not properly dispose of medical sharps, those needles pose a public health risk along with potential to injure haulers and recycling facility workers. 

To reduce public health risks, Wisconsin rules require all citizens to manage sharps safely. It is illegal to put sharps in the trash or with recyclables and there are several options for safe disposal:

  • Contact your pharmacy, doctor, clinic or local hospital; many health care facilities accept sharps but are not legally required to register and therefore may not appear on the list of registered sharps collection stations.
  • Take sharps to a registered collection station.  To find a site in Waukesha County go to and click on Medical under Product Disposal.
  • Use a “mail-back” sharps program, which can be found by searching the internet. The company should provide containers and packaging which meet U.S. postal regulations.

 “We want to make sure residents understand that if they dispose of their medical needles and sharps improperly, they are putting workers who collect and sort their recyclables at risk. Much of this work is done by hand, creating a hazardous situation for people who are providing a service to all of us,” stated Karen Fiedler, Solid Waste Supervisor for Waukesha County.

 For more information and options for safe disposal of medical sharps visit the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources website:



Entry filed under: In the News, Local Interest.


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