A new drop-off location has been announced by Grand Forks Public Health for the community to safely dispose of medical sharps, including needles. These sharps are considered hazardous waste and cannot be disposed of in regular trash. The new facility at the Grand Forks Withdrawal Management Center on 207 S. 4th St. will help prevent future hazards by keeping the sharps out of the trash.
The opioid response coordinator for Grand Forks Public Health, Michael Dulitz, stated that this initiative is an important step in reducing the risk of bloodborne pathogens in the community and providing a safer way to dispose of sharps. Containers must be sturdy plastic and can be purchased at Inspire Pharmacy for less than $3, located around the block from the disposal site at 360 Division Ave. #100. The drop-off facility is open 24/7 for containers under five quarts, with larger quantities accepted between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. It’s important to note that commercial entities are not accepted at the drop-off location, but this new facility replaces the previously closed Altru Hospital drop-off due to construction.
This program is supported by Grand Forks Public Health, Altru, Inspire Pharmacy, and Spectra Health and aligns with efforts to reduce bloodborne pathogen risk in the community, ultimately contributing to a safer and healthier environment for everyone in Grand Forks area residents.
In conclusion, proper disposal of medical sharps is crucial to prevent hazards such as contamination of soil or water sources. This new drop-off location offers a convenient and responsible way for community members to safely dispose of their sharps while also contributing to public health efforts in preventing bloodborne pathogen transmission.
It is worth mentioning that needles are often used illicitly or improperly discarded which can lead to hepatitis C virus (HCV) outbreaks or other infectious diseases transmitted through sharing needles or contaminated drugs or liquids.
The initiative provides an opportunity for individuals who may not have access to safe disposal methods beforehand or those who may not have been aware of the risks associated with improper disposal of medical sharps.
Overall, this new initiative will greatly benefit public health efforts in preventing harm caused by improper disposal of medical sharps and contribute towards creating a safer environment for everyone in Grand Forks area residents.