Diseases such as Hepatitis A and C, and HIV can be transmitted by needle sticks. Needles, sharps and syringes should be safely managed to prevent injury and disease transmission. Steps for safe disposal by a household:

  • Purchase a commercially available sharps container. If you do not have a sharps container, use a plastic bottle that cannot be broken or punctured, such as a bleach bottle or laundry detergent bottle.
  • With a permanent marker label container, "USED HOUSEHOLD SHARPS - DO NOT RECYCLE."
  • Add sharps point-first into container.
  • Keep lid on at all times to prevent spills and decrease needle stick hazards.
  • Fill container as much as possible with sharps. You must be able to close container lid.
  • When full, cap container with lid and duct tape shut.
  • Place in trash.

For more information and to find medication disposal sites, see Medication and Sharps Disposal.

Hand placing needle into secure sharps container

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