All Points Medical Waste Blog

What Are the Effects of Medical Waste Pollution?

And How You Can Help Prevent Them

Discarded medical personal protective equipment (PPE)Medical waste that’s improperly disposed of can have dangerous effects on the environment, community and all of its inhabitants, humans and animals alike. Medical professionals are tasked with understanding these effects and how to prevent them.

Health Risks

Medical waste can carry microorganisms that can in turn spread diseases like HIV, Hepatitis B and C, tuberculosis, bacteria and infections. When improperly disposed of, sharps, needles and related items can cause injuries and illness. Serious health outcomes can also result from toxic exposure to discarded pharmaceuticals and pathogenic microbes in water supplies or soil.

Plastic Waste Effects on the Environment

The healthcare industry in the United States generates approximately one million tons of plastic waste per year and only a small amount of that waste is recycled. This waste contributes to the pollution in our oceans, affecting wildlife and climate change. One time use plastics used by medical professionals make up nearly 20% of the medical waste generated, yet most of this waste is not recycled and ends up in landfills, waterways or other places in the community.

PPE Pollution

Personal Protective Equipment used by healthcare professionals is an essential element to keeping workers safe from infection and illness. With the onset of the global pandemic, millions of people began using masks and gloves as well to protect them from spreading the COVID-19 virus. Today, improperly discarded PPE is landing on our beaches, in our oceans and throughout our community in many different places. These items are polluting our marine ecosystems and posing a threat to humans through the release of microplastics.

What Can You Do to Reduce the Effects Of Medical Waste?

As a healthcare professional, it’s imperative you understand how improperly disposed of medical waste can adversely affect the environment and the community. Proper collection, storage and disposal of all waste is key to reducing the effects. Ensure that your staff, patients and visitors are safe by following compliance mandates and managing all medical waste generated in your facility properly. Partner with a licensed and reputable medical waste disposal company that will provide disposal services as well as the approved waste containers.

All Points Medical Waste is committed to helping protect you, your organization and the community by providing full service medical waste disposal. We are a family-owned and operated company in Stuart, Florida, serving customers throughout Florida, from Broward County all the way to Okeechobee County. We also provide comprehensive compliance training for your staff. Give us a call today or complete the form on this page to get a quick quote.


Dawn Connelly

Dawn is the vice president of All Points Medical Waste. All Points Medical Waste is a family-owned and operated medical waste disposal and compliance company that has been serving the Treasure Coast, Palm Beaches, and surrounding areas since 1994.
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