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Clinical and healthcare waste

Service arrangements as a result of coronavirus

The following restrictions apply to the clinical waste collection service until further notice:

Collections of clinical sharps containers

We will only collect sharps containers where this is needed urgently.  Most residents who use this service only need to receive a collection every 3-6 months, so this should not cause a problem.  Please continue to use your sharps containers normally, and store any full containers in your home until normal services are resumed.  We can provide more containers if you need them, but please keep any requests to a minimum, and use your existing container until it is full.  It is safe to store a small number of sharps containers, containing only your own sharps, in your home until it can be collected.

Collections of bagged clinical waste

The normal weekly collection service will be maintained to collect bags of clinical waste.  You need to make sure that your bagged waste is left outside your front door in a visible place on the day of collection, ready to be collected.  Our staff will not enter your home as they are required to follow government guidance on social distancing.

If anyone is self isolating because they or a member of the household is showing symptoms of coronavirus, you must follow the government guidance for disposal of waste, which requires the following measures to be taken. 

If any member of the household has had coronavirus symptoms:

Households that are self isolating because a member of the household has had coronavirus symptoms should follow the UK Governments stay at home advice. This requires you to:

  • store personal waste such as tissues and disposable cleaning cloths within disposable rubbish bags
  • place these bags into another bag, tied securely and keep it separate from other waste
  • these bags should be put aside for a minimum of 72 hours (3 days) before you put them in your general waste bin
  • you cannot take this type of waste to the Household Waste Recycling and Reuse Centre

We offer a household clinical and healthcare waste collection service to individual households in Southwark free of charge. To receive this service, individual service users need to be registered for the service by their General Practitioner or other healthcare professional. 

Organisations needing a clinical waste collection service in the course of their business should contact the council for advice. If we're able to provide a service, this will require a contract for the provision of this service and a charge will be payable. You must not dispose of your clinical waste with general waste.

Page last updated: 29 December 2022

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