EHRS is responsible for the development and implementation of safe and effective management practices for all waste categorized as "infectious" by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. Our goal is to manage the handling, sorting, storage, and disposal of all infectious waste generated at the University of Pennsylvania in a safe, environmentally sound manner that complies with all relevant regulations.

General Biohazardous Waste Guidelines for the University:

  • ALL syringes (with and without the needle), razor blades, and scalpels MUST always be discarded in a puncture resistant and leakproof sharps container.

syringesingle-edged razor bladedisposable scaples

  • Other Sharps waste that has come in contact with infectious, human, or recombinant material MUST be discarded in a puncture resistant and leakproof sharps container.  Sharps include anything that could potentially puncture a bag:

    •     Needles & syringes

    •     Razor blades

    •     Scalples

    •     Pasteur pipettes

    •     Serological pipettes

    •     Pipette Tips

    •     Other pointed devices

                                                                                sharps

Click on diagram below to enlarge guidance on Proper Disposal of Sharp Objects

sharps                      

  • Biohazardous "soft waste" must be discarded in red biohazard bags.  "Soft waste" includes:

    •     Gloves

    •     Tissue culture flasks

    •     Centrifuge tubes

    •     Other non-sharps material that has come in contact with infectious, human, or recombinant material

 

  • Infectious waste autoclave bags, red bags, sharps containers, and anything else with the universal biohazard symbol affixed to it DOES NOT belong in General Trash or Recycling under any circumstances! (See the FRES Waste Management and Recycling page for appropriate Lab Waste recycling guidance)

 

  • CLICK on the posters below for a printable pdf.  

Lab Waste Guide          know where to throw        dumpster poster        

See Section 8 of the Biosafety Manual for more on infectious waste management and procedures.