Colorado Adopts Greener Method of Medical Waste Processing


Colorado Medical Waste, Inc., announces that Colorado has become the third state in the nation to adopt an environmentally safe technology for the processing of medical waste. The new green technology, using ozone to process medical waste with no environmental contaminants, is positioned to make noxious medical waste dumping a thing of the past.
Following approvals by the City of Aurora, Metro Waste Water Reclamation, and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE); final approval was granted on March 10 for operation of the Ozone Medical Waste Processor at the company’s Aurora location.
Colorado Medical Waste is the first in Colorado to adopt this technology. President Beverly Hanstrom has worked for more than three years to obtain regulatory approvals to operate her Ozone Medical Waste Processor. “We are ecstatic to finally put this amazing technology to work for Colorado,” says Hanstrom. “Ozone medical waste processing is the future and will replace antiquated technologies and processes of the past. It’s been a long time coming, and we are poised and positioned to accommodate five tons per day and have planned in advance for the installation of another ozone processor as volume increases.”
Hanstrom relocated Colorado Medical Waste to Aurora in July 2012, because of the high concentration of medical waste generators at Aurora’s Anschutz Medical Campus. “We ‘ve been operating over 21 years collecting and transporting medical waste from medical waste generators to traditional autoclaves for processing. There is no volume reduction using autoclaves. The waste is semi-melted but is still recognizable before it is dumped into landfills. Industrial compactors weighing several tons are required to pass over the waste three times,” Hanstrom says. “This breaks open bags and sharps containers leaving used syringes, blood vials, blood-soaked material and treated medical waste fully exposed.”

Autoclaves use steam to disinfect medical waste, but they cannot treat costly pathological or animal waste that is sent to incinerators in neighboring states. Chemotherapy and pharmaceutical waste still requires incineration. Hanstrom was intent to convey that fetuses are not accepted by Colorado Medical Waste. “Our technology and processes offer many positive benefits. Our new Ozone Medical Waste Processor is more effective than steam to kill infectious pathogens and bacteria and is done without the consumption of natural resources. A myriad of energy efficiencies are incorporated into the design of the machine to make it the most environmental means of processing medical waste to date,” says Hanstrom.

Colorado Medical Waste’s OMW-1000 uses ozone to process medical waste. Unlike autoclaves, which produce a disgusting smell, the ozone process creates a pleasant rain-like aroma with zero emissions, zero chemicals and no morally questionable dumping into landfills. It then uses an industrial shredder to tear the metal and plastic material to a residual similar to confetti and reduces the volume of waste by 90 percent.

Hanstrom adds, “This is truly a game-changing technology. We are very excited to make Colorado a groundbreaking state in protecting public health and the environment from contamination of medical waste. My hope is that the work we’ve done in Colorado can move other states forward to adopt this green technology.”

Source: Colorado Medical Waste, Inc.

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