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Should Healthcare Facilities Be Able To Treat Their Medical Waste On-Site?

A new proposition made by Prospect Heights Care Center to allow for medical waste to be disposed and neutralized on the premises caused an uproar among the citizens of Hackensack, NJ last month. Concerned residents gathered at the Bergen County Freeholders meeting to protest this alarming application.screenshot

Notable public servants such as Councilmen David Sims and Leonardo Battaglia, as well as Deputy Mayor Kathleen Canestrino, were also in attendance.

Bob Feinberg, a resident of Prospect Avenue made accusations that this policy was a direct threat to people’s health and safety, as well as real estate values in the area. Feinberg stated that this was a dire issue, as having medical waste dumped in such a highly populated area would expose residents and businesses to harmful toxins.

The session meeting’s chairwoman, Joan Voss, allowed for Feinberg to represent the Prospect Preservation Group, even though public contribution is normally uncharacteristic of these sessions.

Feinberg described the entire neutralization process in detail – a room temperature process that will only sterilize the germs that have direct contact with the neutralizing agent. Unlike an autoclave that utilizes boiling water or high pressure steam to kill all germs in the vicinity, this process would not successfully kill all the potentially harmful germs.

Feinberg wasn’t the only one who had complaints, as others at the meeting brought up all sorts of issues that accompanied this on-site sterilization. Some of the concerns the session heard were potential health problems, diminished aesthetic appeal, and unpleasant smells; all issues that would greatly impact residents who live especially close to the care facility.

After hearing the concerns of these New Jersey citizens, Chairwoman Voss assured everyone at a thorough review of all the details pertaining to this permit application. Voss reassured the public representatives at the meeting that she and the board would do their research and not make any solid decisions until they were completely confident of its safety.

How does your healthcare facility handle medical waste? Contact Medassure today to see how we can help!

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