Safe sharps disposals
Sharps are devices used to
penetrate the skin. In diabetes
management these include:
- Finger pricking devices or lancets
- Insulin syringes
- Pen needles used with insulin pens
- Introducer needles for insulin
infusion sets for insulin pumps
Once a sharp is used can I
throw it in the general waste?
No, it is unsafe to dispose of sharps in
household waste. Members of your family,
council workers and members of the
public may be exposed to your sharp
if disposed of in household waste,
leading to a needlestick injury.
What is a needlestick injury?
A needlestick injury means the skin is
accidentally punctured by a used needle.
An injury of this nature can cause much
distress, as exposure can occur at any
time following incorrect disposal.
How should sharps be disposed?
All sharps devices should be disposed
of in a sharps container. This is a nonreusable
container for the collection of
sharp medical items used in health care.
A sharps container should be a rigid, leak
proof, puncture resistant and shatter proof
container with a tight fitting lid and should
comply with Australian Standards.
Where can I purchase a sharps
Sharps containers can be purchased at
Diabetes SA and most chemists. They are
yellow in colour and clearly labelled.
Order online now
Can I dispose of my full sharps
container in the general waste?
No, once a sharps container is full it
must be sealed and disposed of only
into community sharps disposal facilities.
These may include public hospitals,
participating pharmacies and local
councils. Contact your local council or
pharmacy and ask if they have approved
sharps bins for safe sharps disposal.
Diabetes SA offers a free service to its
members to safely dispose of sealed
sharps containers during business hours of
operation (Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm). Become a member today.
Download: Safe sharps disposal