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Some wastes from healthcare (also called clinical waste) may prove hazardous to those that come into contact with them and are subject to stringent controls.

Controls on the disposal of healthcare waste

Under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 it is unlawful to deposit, recover or dispose of controlled (including clinical) waste without a waste management licence, contrary to the conditions of a licence or the terms of an exemption, or in a way which causes pollution of the environment or harm to human health. Contravention of waste controls is a criminal offence. Section 34 of the act, places people concerned with controlled (including clinical) waste under a duty of care to ensure that the waste is managed properly, recovered or disposed of safely and is only transferred to someone who is authorised to keep it. Householders are exempt for their own household waste.

Hazardous healthcare waste is subject to the requirements of the Hazardous Waste Regulations 2005 (PDF, 83.3KB,



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