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Healthcare waste

How you dispose of healthcare and clinical waste depends on the type.

Clinical waste

Dressings, bandages, swabs contaminated with:

  • Materials known to cause diseases in humans or other living things.
  • Medicines containing a biologically active pharmaceutical agent e.g. cytotoxic or cytostatic drugs.

These should be placed in a clinical waste bag by the healthcare worker treating you in your home. The healthcare worker should then arrange the safe removal of this. Do not place in your general rubbish.

Dressing not contaminated can be double wrapped and placed in your general rubbish.

Offensive (hygiene) waste

Non-infectious waste including:

  • Sanitary products
  • Incontinence pads
  • Stoma bags
  • Catheter waste
  • Home dialysis waste (empty saline or glucose IV bags and tubing)
  • ‘Peg’ or stomach feeding equipment.

These can be double wrapped and placed in your general rubbish bin or sacks, provided they are not contaminated with infectious materials and/or cytotoxic or cytostatic drugs.


This includes syringes, needles and other sharp instruments. Please do not place in your general rubbish.

All sharps can be collected from your home by our contractor PHS Ltd. To request a collection please call 01883 722000. Once we have your details we will pass these to PHS and you will receive a letter within 10 working days explaining how to arrange your collection(s).

For your first collection the sharps must be contained in a special sharps box which is available on prescription from a GP or healthcare professional. If you require a regular collection PHS will leave you a new container (5 litre) when they collect your full one.


Take unwanted or out of date medicines to your local pharmacy. Do not place in your general rubbish.

Medicine and medical product packaging

Empty and uncontaminated packaging and containers, including cardboard boxes, paper instructions and clean plastic bottles can be placed in your blue lidded mixed recycling bin or clear recycling sacks.