Disposal of Waste Insulin Needles

Disposal of Waste Insulin Needles

Diabetes is a lifelong metabolic disease, and insulin injection and blood glucose monitoring are extremely important components of comprehensive diabetes treatment. With the widespread use of insulin, diabetic patients are increasingly accepting insulin injections at home and self-monitoring blood sugar, and the resulting infectious and damaging wastes are also increasing.

It has been reported that each insulin-injected patient uses a single-use injection device 2 to 3 times a day and discards 60 to 90 discarded syringe needles per month. The random disposal of discarded needles and blood sugar test strips by diabetic patients at home can cause harm to the environment, spread diseases, injury and infection, and pose a direct threat to the environment and human physical and mental health. Therefore, how patients handle insulin needles should be highly concerned by medical staff.

  1. Status of waste insulin needles disposal

A study by De Coninck et al showed that only 33% of sharps use patients put the used sharps in a special storage container, 12% put it in an empty bottle or carton, and 46% put it back in a trocar. After the cap, it is directly mixed with household waste, and 3.5% of the exposed needles are directly discarded. A survey of outpatient diabetic patients showed that only 18.8% of the patients put the needle after injection with the outer needle cap on, put it in a special waste container, and then threw it into the trash can, and the rest were all incorrect disposal methods;  The survey report of He et al. on the self-management of medical waste for diabetic patients at home shows that 92.1% of the diabetic patients throw the used injection needles and blood collection needles directly into the household garbage; The awareness rate of the treatment process after needlestick injury was 13.4%.

Patients and their families do not have the awareness of distinguishing between medical waste and domestic waste, and even dump domestic waste mixed with medical waste in rivers, fronts and backyards of houses and fields, which poses serious safety hazards.

  1. Standardized management measures for discarded insulin needles

 Strengthen the health education of patients

Blind spots in health education for diabetic patients are the main reasons why home insulin injection patients randomly discard medical waste. Therefore, in addition to the five carriages, health education for diabetic patients should also include medical waste classification, recycling, disposal methods, insulin Risk education of needle reuse and random disposal of medical waste, the importance of standardized management of medical waste, and the necessity of self-management, etc.

Training community public health personnel

Strengthen the training of community medical staff on household medical waste management knowledge, strengthen and popularize the concept of environmental protection; strengthen the publicity and popularization of household medical waste management knowledge, strengthen the understanding of the importance of household medical waste management, and make nursing staff realize the correct disposal The medical waste generated by diabetic patients at home is the responsibility of every nursing worker. In the process of health education, it is the responsibility and obligation to do a good job in popularizing publicity and education, and spread the concept of environmental protection.

Improve the out-of-hospital follow-up work for chronically ill patients

Medical staff can cooperate with local community hospitals to intervene and supervise patient behavior, and improve the out-of-hospital follow-up of insulin injections for diabetic patients, which not only implements the continuous care model for diabetic patients, but also avoids accidental harm caused by medical waste to the community.

Set up medical waste recycling points

Hospitals, community health service centers and service stations are obliged to undertake the management of medical waste recycling. Each community and street can set up terminal recycling points for medical waste, and relevant departments will conduct unified management to strengthen the effective management of medical waste.

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