Background All hazardous pharmaceutical waste must be clearly identified, segregated and consigned with the six digit European Waste Catalogue code (18 01 08) within purple-lidded containers to permit safe destruction. [The Hazardous Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2005 (amended 2009)].
Within NBT, as for most UK hospitals, the route for the disposal of cytotoxic pharmaceutical waste was well established, but did not include cytostatic material.
Purpose To adopt a new mechanism throughout NBT to:
Identify and segregate hazardous waste
Raise awareness and train staff to manage waste legally
Introduce new hazardous labelling and patient information
Materials and Methods This included:
Revision of the existing pharmacy waste control manual and comprehensive list of hazardous drugs. This laminated list with a visual guide to the waste streams was displayed throughout the pharmacy
The list was used to ‘code-tag’ and highlight all existing hazardous material in the software system
New hazardous products were identified following an initial Quality Assurance assessment
A new permanent self-adhesive purple ‘Hazardous – dispose of appropriately’ sticker was designed for attachment to each package of relevant items by stores staff on receipt
A leaflet was designed following discussions with NBT patient panel
Results The new system was agreed/ratified through NBT Medicines Governance Group before implementation. The NBT waste management team adopted this purple waste stream model throughout NBT and amended policies/procedures. Awareness was raised with all staff through existing training sessions to ensure trust-wide uptake and continued compliance.
Conclusions NBT Pharmacy has developed a waste control mechanism to process hazardous waste to ensure compliance with all legal requirements. Following recent external independent audits by the current waste contractors and the Environment Agency, the new model was described as ‘very impressive’ and stated that that this ‘more than satisfied that the department and trust are fully compliant with waste regulations’.
No conflict of interest.
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