Delaware Biohazard Waste Regulations
Infectious waste may not be stored at the waste producing facility for more than 14 days at room temperature (18 to 28 degrees Celsius, 65 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit) or up to 45 days in a refrigerator (2 to 7 degrees Celsius, 36 to 44 degrees Fahrenheit) for all types of infectious waste, so long as it does not produce conditions that are offensive or harmful to facility personnel or the public welfare.
Infectious waste may not be stored at the waste producing facility for more than 90 days in a freezer (-20 to -18 degrees Celsius, -4 to -1 degrees Fahrenheit) not used for food or patient related items.
Sharps which are disposed in a container specifically designed for sharps and which is sealed so as to prevent leaks when it is full, are exempt from the time limit on storage.
Delaware’s medical waste disposal regulations are managed by the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances. The complete detailed disposal requirements are outlined in Special Wastes Management, Infectious Waste.
In addition to the state medical waste environmental regulations there are some Occupational Safety and Health Administration rules that apply to medical/infectious waste. Delaware is one of 26 states covered entirely by the federal OSHA program. OSHA rules (Occupational Exposure to Bloodborne Pathogens Standards) impact various aspects of medical/infectious waste, including management of sharps, requirements for containers that hold or store medical/infectious waste, labeling of medical/infectious waste bags/containers, and employee training.