While the name is daunting, you have probably handled biohazard waste. If you have ever thrown away a bloody bandage, you have technically handled a biohazardous material. However, when we talk about bio hazard clean-up New Jersey, we are rarely talking about bandages at home. Instead, we are talking about sufficient biological material that could pose a threat to public health. That may be because it is identified as infectious, could be infectious, or poses another threat to safety.
Not all biohazards are the same. The Center for Disease Control has identified four levels of biohazard. Level 1 is the lowest risk and Level 4 is the highest risk.
Level 1 is considered minimally threatening. It includes material that could contain diseases like E. Coli, Naegleria gruberi, and Bacillus subtilis.
Level 2 is considered severely threatening to individuals who have direct contact with infected materials. It includes diseases like HIV, salmonella, and hepatitis B.
Level 3 includes serious diseases that can be airborne. Tuberculosis, Coxiella burnetiid, and COVID-19 fall into this category.
Level 4 is for the worst of the worst diseases. These are diseases that are infectious and do not have treatments. Ebola is the best-known example of a level 4 biohazard.
What Are Biohazards?
Biohazards can be any type of biological material that poses a threat to other living organisms. They can refer to plants, animals, microorganisms or any of their by-products. Biohazards can be found anywhere, which means that most people will encounter them during their lifetime. The most common biohazards are:
Human blood. Blood is a known carrier of a number of pathogens, and you should always treat any blood as if it is potentially contaminated. That means, at a minimum, using gloves before handling any blood or blood products. It also means safely disposing of items that may contain blood.
Human body fluids. Any human body fluid could also contain pathogens. This includes semen, vaginal fluid, amniotic fluid, cerebrospinal fluid, peritoneal fluid, and pleural fluid.
Human waste. Human waste has been one of the major vectors for disease transmission over the course of human history. It can carry a number of diseases, most notably E. coli.
Animal blood. If we have learned anything from Covid-19, it is that diseases can move between animals and humans. Animal blood could contain pathogens that can infect people.
Animal waste. Like animal blood, animal waste can contain pathogens that can either directly infect humans or pose a risk to our food supply.
Microbiological waste. This type of waste is common in laboratory or medical environments. It includes cultures, tools or instruments used to grow or measure cultures, and discarded viruses or bacterial.
Sharps. Anything that contains a needle is considered a sharp. This is a very specific type of biohazard waste, because it adds in the risk that a needle will break through someone’s skin and pierce PPE like gloves, increasing the risk of infection.
Pathological waste. This is waste from medical procedures and biopsies.
Bio One Can Handle Your Biohazards
Whether you are a medical facility that needs regular biohazard management or a business owner dealing with a biohazard cleanup, Bio One can help. Contact us today to find out more.