Household Infectious Waste

Household waste containing regulated infectious waste in amounts normally found in household waste may be disposed of at a permitted municipal waste landfill. Home healthcare waste (bloodied bandages, IV bags, etc.) should be double bagged and placed in your garbage.

Sharps Disposal
Hypodermic Needle

Improper disposal of needles, lancets and other sharps can pose a health risk to the public and waste workers. For example, discarded needles may expose waste workers to potential needle stick injuries and potential infection when containers break open or needles are mistakenly sent to recycling facilities.



Options for the proper disposal of sharps in North Dakota:
  • Collection programs
    You can check with your local hospital, clinic or pharmacy to see if they have a program to take back your full sharps containers. Not all hospitals, clinics or pharmacies in North Dakota offer this service.
  • Sharps mail-back programs
    You can contact a company to enter their program. You then place your used sharps in special containers provided by the company and return the container by mail to them for proper disposal. This service usually requires a fee. Fees vary, depending on the size of the container. Listed below are examples of companies offering these services:
    • Home Needle Destruction Devices
      Several manufacturers offer products that allow you to destroy used needles at home. These devices sever, burn, or melt the needle rendering it safe for disposal in the trash. The prices of these devices vary according to product type and manufacturer. Check with your pharmacist or search the internet using keywords "sharps disposal devices."
    • Trash Disposal
      The last and least preferred option is to place a filled sharps container in the trash. Needles and syringes should be placed in heavy plastic containers (for example, laundry detergent containers) not 2-liter soda pop bottles. You can also check with your pharmacy to see if it sells commercial containers specially designed to hold sharps for disposal in your household trash. The container should be labeled "Sharps". When full the container should be taped shut and placed in your garbage. Do not recycle the full plastic container.
     
     
    If you have further questions contact, by e-mail, Christine Roob or by telephone at 701.499.5207.



    Division of Waste Management Home Page

    Updated: 2 Oct. 2014