From the moment you generate medical waste, the disposal of that waste is ultimately your responsibility. If you run a facility that generates medical waste, then you should be familiar with local and federal laws that govern safe disposal. However, how medical waste is disposed of doesn’t just stop at the red bag or sharps container. Do you understand what “cradle to grave” regulations are and what it means for your medical waste?
What cradle to grave means is from the moment you generate medical waste, the disposal of that waste is ultimately your responsibility. Even if you hire someone else to do it, you are still liable for any failure on their part to follow the law.
Cradle to grave comes from The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act of 1976, or RCRA. This was enacted because, prior to this law, only 10 percent of hazardous waste material was being managed properly.
One section of RCRA specifically outlines the management of hazardous waste, from “cradle to grave,” meaning that hazardous waste must be handled in a way that protects both the environment and human health.
Cradle to grave also states that a generator – whether a hospital, medical spa, tattoo parlor, or veterinary practice – is responsible for its waste from the point of generation to its final destination of disposal. There are no expiration dates, no time limits, and hiring someone else to transport and dispose of your waste does not absolve you of this responsibility.
It’s because of this we here at MedXwaste stress compliance and accountability with our customers. Do you have a medical waste management plan? Are your containers properly labeled and filled? Are you storing your medical waste out of common areas and away from general traffic? Proper packaging, labeling and transportation of regulated medical waste is mandated by federal and state regulations. Even if you follow everything to the letter, don’t rely on just anyone to transport and haul away your medical waste. Remember, you are still responsible for it, even when it leaves your facility!
If an incident happens to occur at any point during your waste’s lifecycle, you will be held liable and may also be obligated to pay costs associated with cleanup and penalties.
Due to the cradle to grave provision within RCRA, MedXwaste cannot legally take ownership of your waste. However, our trained professionals will ensure that your waste is disposed of properly, safely, and securely, so that you maintain compliance under the confines of RCRA.
Contact MedXwaste to discuss service options today!