Regulated Medical Waste Management in Oral Healthcare Settings

Since all oral healthcare facilities generate some RMW, they must all have a RWM management program that meets jurisdictional requirements. The plan must include educational and training objectives related to the safe handling of RMW during segregation, packaging, storage, transportation, treatment, and disposal; and the establishment of a recordkeeping system. It is also advocated that an Office Medical Waste Manager (OMWM) be appointed to administer the program (Table 1).

Table 1. Responsibilities of an Office Medical Waste Manager.
The Office Medical Waste Manager should be:
  1. Be familiar with pertinent federal, state and local requirements for RMW management.
  2. Develop, implement, and maintain a written RMW management protocol that meets federal, state, and local requirements.
  3. Ensure that appropriate containers are maintained in areas where RMW is generated and that replacement containers are available in a central location accessible at all times.
  4. Act as advisor on RMW management matters to all office personnel.
  5. Maintain liaison with the RMW disposal contractor (if applicable).