Clinical waste

We provide a free clinical waste collection to Harlow residents who self-medicate at home.

Clinical waste is any waste which poses a threat of infection to humans. This can include:

  • syringes, needles or other sharps
  • infectious bodily fluids
  • drugs or pharmaceuticals
  • infected swabs or dressings

To request a clinical waste collection, you need to:

As part of the application process, you need to get your doctor to confirm the waste is clinical.

If you are being treated by a private or NHS healthcare professional in your home, the healthcare provider will arrange disposal of clinical waste including sharps.

You cannot put clinical waste in your normal bin.

Offensive waste

If your doctor confirms your waste is offensive, rather than clinical, you can put it in your normal bin, as long as it is securely tied and free from excess liquid.

Offensive waste can be offensive in appearance and smell but does not pose a risk of infection. This can include:

  • catheter and stoma bags
  • condoms
  • incontinence pads
  • nappies
  • plasters (minor first aid or self-care) generated by personal use
  • sanitary waste
  • waste from domestic first aid (excluding sharps) that is non-infectious

Nappies and incontinence waste

We also offer a separate nappy and incontinence waste collection.

You can request an application form for this collection from Contact Harlow.