phs is here to help with your medical waste disposal needs. We collect a range of both healthcare waste and non-healthcare waste, and we produce waste via the consumables used in our customers’ washrooms.
Healthcare or medical waste disposal
Healthcare waste is waste produced during human or animal healthcare or related research activities. It covers both clinical and offensive waste and is generally the result of healthcare activities, like those taking place in a hospital, clinic, veterinary practice or care home. Some examples of healthcare waste include:
- Infectious clinical waste
- Medicinally contaminated clinical waste
- Hard infectious clinical waste
- Dental lead foil waste
- Pharmaceutical waste (non-hazardous)
- Infectious sharps waste
- Medicinally contaminated sharps waste
- Cytotoxic clinical waste
- Dental amalgam waste
- Nappy/incontinence waste
- Gypsum waste
Non-healthcare wastes disposal
Non-healthcare waste is waste generated as a result of non-healthcare activities and includes ladies’ sanitary waste, nappy/incontinence waste and animals faeces in parks, as well as swabs and dressings from beauty or tattoo parlours and drug litter.
- Ladies sanitary hygiene waste
- Swabs and dressings from beautician or tattoo premises
- Animal faeces
- Fixer and developer waste
- Nappy/incontinence waste
- Drug litter
- Developer waste
What is waste pre-acceptance?
As phs undertakes medical waste disposal, we have a legal duty to obtain certain information from the waste producer before we can commit to collecting its waste: this is the Pre-Acceptance Audit.
The purpose of pre-acceptance is to:
- Ensure that waste is classified correctly
- Ensure that waste is correctly packaged and labelled
- Ensure that waste is correctly segregated, based on its hazard
- Ensure waste is transported in accordance with legal requirements
- Ensure that the site receiving waste is permitted to take waste
- Ensure that the site receiving waste has the resources to accept waste (e.g., sites receiving anatomical waste are likely to require refrigerators)
- Prevent harm to human health and the environment
- Provide a comprehensive audit trail for waste.
What kind of businesses can complete a Pre-Acceptance Audit?
The location types applicable to complete Pre-Acceptance Audits:
- Doctors’/GP surgeries
- Healthcare centres
- Care homes that provide medical or nursing care
- Community pharmacies
- Ambulance trusts
- Dental centre
- Non-healthcare facilities at which a healthcare professional produces waste
- Veterinary clinics
- Research laboratories generating clinical waste
- Any other medical practices
- Pharmaceutical manufacturers/suppliers.
What kind of business doesn’t need to complete a Pre-Acceptance Audit?
The following locations would not be applicable to submit a Pre-Acceptance Audit:
- Domestic sites
- Care homes without care or nursing staff
- Non-medical producers of clinical waste.
Some examples include centres for tattoos and body piercing, minor first aid, hairdressers and beauty treatments, as well as substance abuse refuse.
How are different waste amounts and risk levels categorised?
- High-volume producers (producing five or more tonnes of waste per year)
- All healthcare producers.
- High-risk producer, producing under five tonnes per year
- Research labs.
- Low-risk producers, producing under five tonnes per year
- Other medical practices, including general practices engaged in medical consultation and treatment in the field of general and specialised medicine by general practitioners, medical specialists and surgeons
- Other healthcare premises (except hospitals or practicing medical doctors), involving para medical practitioners legally recognised to treat patients
- Community pharmacies
- Care homes with care and nursing staff
- Healthcare waste producers not wholly or partially encompassing the above.
What are the requirements for pre-acceptance?
If your business is generating healthcare waste and, therefore, is applicable to submit a Pre-Acceptance Audit, you will need to remember:
- Pre-acceptance audits are a legal requirement for the collection, transportation, storage and disposal of all healthcare waste.
- These audits should cover all the waste services on-site, whether or not these products are serviced by
- The audit will need to be updated if a new waste type is added to the contract.
- Audit frequency will increase if there is an increase in the number of bins or service frequency that will result in over five tonnes of waste collected each year.
For more information, see UK government guidelines: Management and disposal of healthcare waste (HTM 07-01).
How is pre-acceptance carried out?
Pre-acceptance is carried out via an audit completed by the waste producer and can be done either through the Myphs portal or on the site’s own audit document.
What does the audit include?
- Your organisation’s name, address and contact details
- What kind of healthcare premises you have (e.g., hospital, vet, general practice or dentist etc)
- The waste types produced in each area of your premises
- For each waste type, a written description, EWC code, type/colour coding of packaging, physical form and hazardous properties
- Specific storage requirements (like cold storage or freezing)
- Segregation practices for any bulk containers, carts or bins
- The estimated volume of waste in each type to be presented for collection.
Can I do a digital Pre-Acceptance Audit?
We are pleased to be able to offer this faster and more efficient option to customers who want a Pre-Acceptance Audit for any of their waste collection needs, including medical waste disposal, healthcare waste disposal and non-healthcare waste disposal.
As a customer, you can take advantage of our customer Myphs portal and manage your account online. With our portal, you will be able to access and submit your Pre-Acceptance Audit, as well as accessing information such as your service history, invoices and useful phs resources. The registration process only takes a few minutes. Register now!
What if you have an existing audit?
You may already have an audit; the good news is that you can submit this to phs.
If you already have an existing Pre-Acceptance Audit, it’s important to be aware that we will use the original completion date of the audit (not the date your contract starts with phs or the date you provided the audit to phs).
You can complete your own audit documentation, or you can arrange for a third party to complete an audit on your behalf. You can continue to submit these audits to phs and we will then review them.
What do we do with the audit?
Once you’ve completed your audit, it will be assessed to ensure that all required information has been included and that the relevant permits and resources to accept the waste are in place. It is also a legal requirement that we record and retain all correspondence documents with a customer for a period of two years.
Why do we need the phs Pre-Acceptance Audit process?
Pre-acceptance of healthcare waste streams is a legal requirement. Here, you will learn the importance of getting the right contact details to fulfil legal obligations, and for which phs systems will be used to request, submit and manage the audits thereafter.
For a quick list of supporting materials regarding types of waste, audit frequency and which sectors or types of business need to be completing them, see What kinds of waste do we collect?.
What is Pre-Acceptance?
As phs collect healthcare waste, we have a legal duty to obtain certain information from the waste producer before we can commit to collecting its waste: this is the Pre-Acceptance Audit. If you are a healthcare waste producer, failure to have a correct and in-date Pre-Acceptance Audit in place could result in a fine.
A Pre-Acceptance Audit must be in place in order for phs to collect the customer's waste. The purpose of pre-acceptance is to:
- ensure that the waste is classified correctly
- ensure that the waste is correctly packaged and labelled
- ensure that the waste is correctly segregated based on its hazard
- ensure the waste is transported in accordance with legal requirements
- ensure that the site receiving the waste is permitted to take the waste
- ensure that the site receiving the waste has the resources to accept the waste e.g sites receiving anatomical waste are likely to require refrigerators
- prevent harm to human health and the environment
- provide an audit trail for the waste from cradle to grave.
How is an audit generated?
If your business is generating healthcare waste, you must submit a Pre-Acceptance Audit, which should cover all the waste services on site (whether or not those products are serviced by phs). Helpfully, the system also automatically monitors for any change of circumstances that might mean a new audit is required. You might need a new audit if:
- Waste stream changes—a new product is added that is related to healthcare waste.
- Expired audit—the customer has previously provided us with an audit, but the date for a review of their waste streams has been reached (1, 2 or 5 years). An overnight process checks to see if this date has been breached and an email is triggered to the Pre-Acceptance customer contact to request they submit an up to date audit.
- Waste weight changes—if the weight of waste we collect each year has been determined to surpass 5 tonnes, the frequency of audit(s) will need to increase to support this. See HTM07-01 for more detail.
It is important to note that there are costs applicable to the completion of the audit: the standard charge is £50 net per submitted audit.
What’s different with the new Myphs portal?
Our new digital system means that the entire audit process is much more efficient. Once you’re registered with the Myphs portal, you will be able to log straight in using your username and password. Not registered on the portal? See, how to register for the Myphs portal?
How do you submit audits through the new system?
In the Myphs portal, you will be able to see a dedicated tile that shows you if you have audits to complete. All audits are listed in the My audits screen, with the address and current status shown against each. Filters allow you to hone in on audits of a particular status and the search bar gives you the chance to narrow your selection by address (or partial address).
STEP 1: Selecting Start new audit takes you into the audit detail itself. There are four sections to complete. Step one details the company address and asks for confirmation of the contact details. You must declare that you are aware of and comply with the legal guidance (HTM-07-01). At any point, you are able to save your progress should not be able to finish it in one sitting.
STEP 2: You will fill in all departments that create waste. A department could be a ward, a floor, a room or a set of rooms. The waste can be either human or animal.
STEP 3: Here, you will detail the waste streams relating to those departments mentioned in step 2. These are largely dropdown picklists to help guide you through the process and you can add a description to help identify the waste (the weight, collection frequency and quantity on-site are all mandatory fields). A checkbox allows you to indicate if the waste is collected by phs (checked) or a competitor (unchecked).
STEP 4: This step is the detail about the person completing the audit, who may be a different person from the one who’s been in contact with phs. The completion date (pre-set to today) and a playback of the system-calculated audit frequency complete all information you need in order to submit the audit.
What if I have my own audit format to provide to phs?
If you already have an audit of your own ready to submit and don’t want to go through our guided process online, you have the option to upload a PDF version of your audit to the Myphs portal. The PDF must be no larger in size than 10MB and will be virus-checked before it enters the phs ecosystem.
What happens after I’ve submitted the audit?
Once you have completed the audit, it must be assessed by phs to ensure that all required information has been received and that we have the necessary permits and resources to accept the waste.
The audit will then be reviewed and either accepted or rejected. Where the audit has been assessed and approved, you will be able to access the completed PDF copy of your audit via the Myphs portal.
When the expiry date for the approved audit is reached in the future, an email request will automatically be dispatched to you and you will then be able to submit your next audit.
If your audit is rejected, we will tell you the reason for the rejection via email and you will be able to see your rejected audit via the Myphs portal. You can then log in, edit your audit and re-submit it. This process can be repeated until the audit has been approved.Get in Touch!