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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.

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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.

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    single edge       DO NOT RECAP SYRINGES!


  • Biohazardous sharps must be discarded in a puncture resistant and leakproof sharps container.  Sharps include anything that could potentially puncture a bag:

    • Needles & syringesseveral
    • Razor blades
    • Scalples
    • Pasteur pipets
    • Serological pipets
    • Tips
    • Other pointed devices

                Know Where To Throw Poster

                Information on the Reuseable Sharps Container Program

  • Biohazardous "soft waste" must be discarded in red biohazard bags.  "Soft waste" includes:Blue50 and 15

    • Gloves
    • Tissue culture flasks
    • Centrifuge tubes
    • Other non-sharps material

  • Infectious waste autoclave bags, red bags, sharps containers, and anything else with the universal biohazard symbol affixed to it DO NOT belong in general trash or recycling under any circumstances!


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No Infectious Waste of Any Kind In Dumpster Sign




Resources for Biohazardous Waste Disposal:

Disposal Guidelines are unique to each school on campus.  The following waste disposal guides outline specific procedures pertaining to each school and its subsequent buildings (links below in pdf format):


The Biosafety Manual is a great reference that outlines infectious waste management and procedures.



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