Glossary

Regulated Waste

The OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard directly defines “regulated waste” to be: - liquid or semi-liquid blood or other potentially infectious materials (OPIM); - items contaminated with blood or OPIM and which would release these substances in a liquid or semi-liquid state if compressed; - items that are caked with dried blood or OPIM and are capable of releasing these materials during handling; - contaminated sharps; and - pathological and microbiological wastes containing blood or OPIM [1] Some state regulations use a general definition for regulated medical waste, while others list specific wastes and categories of waste that are considered infectious. The following six medical wastes are commonly regulated by states (none of which include vomit or feces or even small amounts of blood): - Pathological waste. Tissues, organs, body parts, and body fluids removed during surgery and autopsy. - Human blood and blood products. Waste blood, serum, plasma and blood products. - Cultures and stocks of infectious agents(microbiological waste). Specimens from medical and pathology laboratories. Includes culture dishes and devices used to transfer, inoculate, and mix. Also includes discarded live and attenuated vaccines. - Contaminated sharps. Contaminated hypodermic needles, syringes, scalpel blades, Pasteur pipettes, and broken glass. Isolation waste. Generated by hospitalized patients isolated to protect others from communicable disease.
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