Everything You Need to Know About Medical Waste Shredders

a collection of medical waste including syringes, vials and tubes

Medical waste requires an effective waste disposal system designed for many types of objects and products. Whether made from hard glass or small metal products, or soft fibers such as linen or latex gloves, the right shredder can get the job done.

This is where industrial-grade medical shredders come in. Shredders turn waste volumes into something sterile and, where possible, recyclable.

Keep reading for all the gritty details on medical waste shredders.

Examining Medical Waste

Medical facilities generate vast amounts of waste daily. Hospitals, labs, nursing homes, clinics, dentists, and funeral homes are a few examples.

This waste must be carefully managed, therefore medical waste gets classified according to its potential risks. The classifications are sometimes different depending on what state you live in, however, the general categories that Franklin Miller shredders break down include:

1. Microbiological

This medical waste is infectious and could spread disease. It’s infected with pathogens from blood, body fluids, or discarded medical specimens. These types of items include used disposable medical supplies and devices.

2. Injurious

Injurious waste is something you’ve thrown away that could injure someone else. It includes glass test tubes, medical needles, scalpels, and other so-called medical sharps.

Why Shredding?

Shredding safely disposes of medical waste. Plus, it saves a lot on the overall costs of disposal and storage. Depending on your requirements, shredders can be set to match your facility’s output and can produce any final particle size you need.

Whatever type of medical waste you’re dealing with, shredders help with pretreatment, which results in a refined, sterilized final product.

After shredding, the final waste product is often burned up in an incinerator. However, another option is to put the material through a dehydrating process which removes the need for incineration.

Dehydration is better for the environment since it reduces emissions and the resulting waste material can then be used as waste-derived fuel.

TASKMASTERⓇ shredders are expertly engineered for plant and lab applications. They efficiently manage all types of medical waste, producing very little dust. These industrial shredders can reduce bulk medical waste by 80%.

Medical waste shredders do the mechanical part of the disposal process. Below is a quick overview of how three TASKMASTERⓇ industrial shredders work:

TM8500

The TM8500 has a small grinder with a twin shaft. It is capable of grinding a wide range of solids.

Its cutting chamber is 8.5 inches. The cutters are available in a variety of configurations that produce the desired particle size and properties.

This shredder has uses in research, and other specified applications. You can read how the TM8500 shredder helped with marine biomass research in this case study.

TM1600

This is an industrial, work-horse type of shredder. It processes heavy solids in gravity and liquid systems. It can be installed horizontally with a stand. Or, it can be fitted vertically with flange adapters for pipeline or channel applications.

TM2300

This is a heavy-duty industrial shredder designed to reduce solids in high-volume. It has a high-torque and a low-speed design. It’s built for maximum performance and reliability.

The TM2300 can reduce a variety of tough solids to strips or chips that are ready for further processing. It allows the efficient disposal of medical waste by reducing volumes significantly.

Regulated Refuse

There are set standards for sterilizing and disposing of harmful medical waste. These standards govern the handling of potentially contaminated items. Medical waste management involves disposal that keeps people, animals, and the environment safe. Since it's hazardous, it needs to go through a sterilization and shredding process.

The point of regulated medical waste is to minimize, or preferably destroy, all hazards by making the waste unrecognizable, unusable, and harmless.

Before waste can get recycled or destroyed, it must first be made non-hazardous. So, the sterilization part usually comes first. The waste gets sorted and transferred to medical recycling facilities. Then the waste materials are treated and processed.

A proper medical waste shredder is vital to recycling waste correctly. Classifications and regulations on medical waste disposal vary from state to state. Medical waste regulations are upheld by federal agencies, including the CDC, OSHA, and the FDA.

Shred Your Medical Waste With Franklin Miller

General medical waste is always considered contaminated. When left untreated, it may harm people, animals, or the environment. The people who work to uphold the regulations that protect us are truly unsung heroes.

If you're a medical waste hero looking for the most effective shredder, you can get expert advice here.