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  • Writer's pictureDave Sarowski

Medical Waste Disposal: Employee Training

Medical waste must be disposed of at your facility, institution, or business. In that case, every new employee will need to be trained to handle the waste properly. Current employees may need refresher courses. As an employer, the responsibility for these things falls on your shoulders.

The extent of training necessary is not proportional to the seriousness of the training. The training required for a janitor collecting medical waste from exam rooms will not be as extensive as for a laboratory assistant regularly disposing of pathological or chemotherapeutic waste. Nevertheless, at every level and position, improper or inadequate training has the potential to cause mistakes that endanger the health and the lives of workers, other employees, and the community at large.

Have A Medical Waste Management Plan

"If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail"

Having a medical waste management plan in place can help to prevent many issues within the company. It also helps to outline detailed instructions for how to handle the waste and proper training that needs to occur. This is required for many businesses and acts as a code of conduct for waste management.

The plan will include the specific responsibilities that are detailed in the job description. It will list how many different positions have different responsibilities that will need training. In addition, what type of training will be required. There are different forms of training, so it is possible to have only one or several different training programs needed.

Facilitate Proper Training

The word “training” in this context is a misnomer. Teaching is a basic passing of information (I tell you what I know). Training is a split between telling and demonstrating.

Facilitating is the level of enablement that needs to be provided when an employee needs to learn how to dispose of medical waste properly. It involves telling, showing, then inviting the trainee to perform the task they need to know.

Teaching will result in a 20-25% retention rate of what an employee heard. Training will result in a retention rate of 40+% of what they were told and shown. Facilitating, however, will result in a retention rate of 70% of what they were told, shown, and then asked to do.

To achieve the highest retention rate, you can have facilitated employees teach new employees. Retention rates when a trainee is required to teach is 95+%.

Consider these aspects when looking for the right company to facilitate your training.

Reinforce And Hold Accountable

At this point, you should understand that even with the strategy for the highest retention rate, nobody remembers everything. So, help them remember.

Provide weekly medical waste safety and disposal training sheets. It doesn’t need to be much but put it on paper. Remind them why they need to wear PPE or where the Medical Waste Management Plan is. Inform them of how they can anonymously report a violation of proper medical waste handling and how doing so could save the lives of their co-workers and friends.

Ask an employee a quick question about the sharps disposal process. Give an employee an extra break and use it to quiz them on the entire SOP for containing, cleaning, and disposing of materials used for a blood spill. If they expect this behavior from you and want to keep their jobs, they’ll stay up on their toes a bit more.

We Can Help with Your Medical Waste Management Plan

Medical Waste Services. LLC has connections to training resources for any size project, big or small. Additionally, we have the resources you need to ensure your business complies with regulations. We'd love to help you educate your employees, about their roles and overall responsibility for guaranteeing medical waste, ensuring it's handled correctly.

To get started, give us a call at 866-355-7094 or fill out the form and we will connect you with the expertise and resources you need. Medical Waste Services, LLC is part of your team..... whenever you need us.

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