October 16, 2020

Emergency preparedness

When Havoc Strikes

September is National Preparedness Month, and this is an ideal time for health care organizations to review and refresh their existing emergency preparedness plans, making sure they fully comply with federal, state and local regulations. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), for example, have various requirements related to emergency preparedness, including for risk assessment and planning, policies and procedures, a communication plan, and training and testing. Separately, in certain situations, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements for an Emergency Action Plan and a Fire Prevention Plan may be triggered.

One key element when making sure your organization’s emergency preparedness program is up to date relates to proper waste transportation and disposal. Your organization should be confident that this process will effectively and compliantly continue throughout an emergency. Otherwise, the consequences could be problematic for your organization, community and the surrounding environment.

Is Your Medical Waste Partner Up for the Job?

Working with the right medical waste disposal partner is critical to ensuring your organization remains safe and compliant during an emergency event. A good vendor will have:

Expertise in Proper Waste Handling and Disposal

This includes having a comprehensive understanding of the rules and regulations around regulated medical waste, sharps, pharmaceutical waste, and controlled substance waste. Not only should the vendor appreciate the regulations that govern normal operations, but they should also understand how those might change during an emergency.

Ability to Adapt to Evolving Circumstances

Your partner should have its own set of emergency preparedness plans that it regularly reviews and updates. These should address different kinds of events, including natural disasters and man-made occurrences.  

A Reliable and Robust Network

If an event cripples the nearest medical waste facility, the vendor should have options available to continue service. Stericycle owns and operates facilities across the country, and can redistribute transportation and treatment to another facility.

Emergencies can pop up at any time and organizations don’t often have control over what happens next. However, by working with a reliable vendor like Stericycle that partners with you to proactively prepare for the worst, you can be sure your organization will be ready should the unthinkable occur.

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