Clinical Waste Collection
All Clinical Waste Collectors have to be approved by EPD and obtain a licence before they can operate in Hong Kong.
Look for licensed clinical waste collectors
Know more about how to apply for a clinical waste collection licence
Clinical Waste Collection Licence Application
Under the Waste Disposal Ordinance, it is an offence if any person provides service for collection and removal of clinical waste without a licence issued by EPD. This system of licensing ensures that clinical waste collection in Hong Kong is conducted with sufficient safeguards that protect community health and the environment.
Who should apply ?
If your company intends to operate or start a business to collect, remove or deliver clinical waste to a disposal site, you should first apply to EPD for a Clinical Waste Collection Licence.
How to apply ?
Please contact us for more details about the application.
Safe transportation of Clinical Waste
Transportation of transit skips should be undertaken only when the covers of skips are securely closed and fastened. All transit skips whether loaded or not should be secured against movement inside the collection vehicle to avoid skidding or falling during transportation.
Transportation by road should be undertaken by dedicated vehicles only in accordance with the conditions specified in the waste collection licence. Vehicles employed for the transportation of clinical waste should have the following features:
- Equipped with mechanical handling equipment to enable the transit skips to be loaded and unloaded with minimal manual effort and human contact with the skips;
- Capable of providing secure retention of transit skips when travelling, and maintaining skips in a good and sanitary condition;
- Comprise either a fully enclosed lorry having a separated cab, or a unitary vehicle in which the driver’s cab is permanently separated from the cargo compartment by a sealed fixed bulkhead;
- The cargo compartment should be provided with adequate lighting and ventilation, lockable doors, spillage-proof and capable of being hygienically cleaned and disinfected;
- Equipped with a tool kit for minor repairs;
- Equipped with sufficient safety gear, decontamination and cleaning equipment and materials for dealing with spillage (e.g. personal protective clothing, spare plastic bags and sharps boxes, disinfectant, absorbent granules, brushes, mops, shovels and buckets); and
- Equipped with suitable equipment such as mobile telephone to facilitate communication with disposal facility operator and the Environmental Protection Department.
A proper warning panel should be displayed at both the front and rear ends of the vehicle to indicate the carriage of clinical waste.
At least one portable fire extinguisher with a minimum capacity of 2 kg of dry powder, or other suitable extinguisher as approved by FSD, should be provided in the vehicle at an accessible location.
Vehicles employed to collect, remove or transport clinical waste should be -
- maintained in sound condition and roadworthy and cleaned at least once per week;
- thoroughly cleaned and disinfected immediately following any spillage inside the vehicle or when contaminated with any clinical waste;
- prohibited from carrying food or pharmaceutical products or any materials which require good sanitary conditions;
- prohibited from carrying any material other than clinical waste unless thoroughly cleaned and disinfected beforehand; and
- prohibited from transportation of any other waste, material or substance during the course of the transportation of clinical waste.
Any vehicle being used for the carriage of clinical waste should not be left unattended unless it is properly locked up and safely parked in an isolated location such as an open space separated from public roads and dwellings.
Any marine vessel used for the transportation of transit skips should be equipped with the necessary facilities to store the skips securely and enable the embarkation and disembarkation of the skips in a safe and secure manner. The marine vessel should have similar safety precaution features as for transportation vehicles subject to necessary modifications.
The transportation of clinical waste should be supervised by trained operational personnel to ensure the waste is handled safely and properly.
Delivery of Clinical Waste by Waste Collector to a Licensed Disposal Facility
Licensed collectors must deliver the clinical waste to a licensed disposal facility within 24 hours after collection from waste producers. Once clinical waste is loaded onto a collection vehicle, the waste should stay in the same vehicle until it is delivered to a licensed disposal facility. Transferring clinical waste from one collection vehicle to another should be avoided, unless during the transfer of clinical waste from a vessel to a vehicle (or vice versa) in the transportation of clinical waste from outlying islands, or in the event of accidents or emergencies, or otherwise authorized.
Licensed collectors should liaise in advance with the operator of licensed disposal facility on the appropriate delivery schedule, waste quantity, handling procedures and other arrangements as necessary for the reception of clinical waste by the facility.
The transit skips used for the collection of clinical waste has been standardized and provided by CWTC. Each skip is marked "CLINICAL WASTE" in English and "醫療廢物" in Chinese, and, for clinical waste requiring refrigeration, “CLINICAL WASTE FOR REFRIGERATION” in English and “冷藏醫療廢物” in Chinese, as well as the international bio-hazard sign in BLACK. Transit skips for Group 3 clinical waste are YELLOW in colour. Each skip bears a unique serial number for easy identification and recording purpose and is displayed in BLACK.
The transit skips are designed to be :
- dedicated for the purpose of storing packaged clinical waste only;
- provided with lid and capable of being fastened;
- proof against spildage of the contents and infiltration of rainwater through the lid or cover;
- proof against harbourage for insects and vermin, and accumulation of clinical waste on edges or in crevices, etc.;
- Multiple-trip type and reusable; and
- Capable of being readily disinfected or decontaminated by steam.
The transit skips should be maintained in good condition and in a clean and sanitary state. The covers of transit skips should be closed and fastened at all times except during loading or unloading of clinical waste.
Loading and unloading of Transit Skips
Loading and unloading of transit skips onto and from the collection vehicle should be performed with care. Staff involved should -
- be competent, suitably trained, supervised, and authorized to perform such a duty; and
- wear appropriate protective clothing such as gloves, industrial safety shoes, aprons and masks.
A licensed collector should ensure that the covers of all transit skips are securely closed and fastened before loading the skips onto a collection vehicle. The door of the cargo compartment of the vehicle should be securely locked at all times except during loading unloading skips.