EPA-registered intermediate-level hospital disinfectants include chlorine-containing products, quaternary ammonium compounds with alcohol, phenolics, and iodophors.20 FDA-registered sterilants/high-level disinfectants include glutaraldehyde, glutaraldehyde with phenol, hydrogen peroxide, and hydrogen peroxide with peracetic acid.20 Chemiclaves may use formaldehyde. Some of these chemicals are P- or U-listed while others may be characteristic hazardous wastes.
Information to determine if a chemical (including disinfectant and sterilant) is hazardous can be obtained from the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) provided by the supplier of the product.8 In some jurisdictions disposal into a sanitary sewer system is permitted if a product is first treated, for example Cidex OPA, an aldehyde, treated with glycine. To minimize the environmental effects of disinfectants and sterilants, follow best management practices (Box F).
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