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Healthcare Environmental Resource Center

This site provides pollution prevention and compliance assistance information for the healthcare sector. It is intended to be a comprehensive resource, covering all the varieties of hospital wastes, and all the rules that apply to them, including both federal regulations and the specific rules that apply in your state. If you see any topics that are not covered, or if you have any suggestions for making this site more useful, please let us know.

What's New on HERC

CDC Provides Guidance for Environmental Infection Control in Hospitals for Ebola Virus.
See latest CDC guidance on PPE, EPA-registered disinfectants, waste management, etc.

Changes to the Reduction of Lead in Drinking Water Act went into effect January, 2014. You must comply with the new standards if you introduce into commerce any pipe or plumbing product providing water for human consumption or are engaged in the installation or repair of any plumbing providing water for human consumption. For more information, review EPA's:

NCMS Launches New Dental Office Environmental Compliance Assistance Resource
The new resource is designed to uncomplicate the maze of environmental regulations facing dentists. Go to Dental section.

Visit the New Veterinary Compliance Assistance Center
The National Center for Manufacturing Sciences (NCMS) launched the Veterinary Compliance Assistance Center (VetCA) on July 15, 2011. VetCA, developed with the assistance of the American Veterinary Medical Association covers hazardous material/waste, medical waste, carcass disposal, facility issues, and more.

ETO Update. After February 28, 2010, a single chamber process is required for ethylene oxide (ETO) treatment of medical equipment and devices in hospitals and healthcare facilities. More ...

EPA Recommendation on the Disposal of Household Pharmaceuticals Collected by Take-Back Events, Mail-Back, and Other Collection Programs. More ...

New Federal Rule Establishes Requirements During Renovation, Repair and Painting Activities that Disturb Lead-Based Paint
The covered facilities include parts of hospitals where children under age six are present on a regular basis. The rule applies to renovation, repair or painting activities. (More information.)

Healthcare in New England. A guide to environmental resources and assistance for hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

Sustainable Healthcare. Current information and breaking news on sustainable practices, conferences/ workshops, and MLB maintained by Virginia Thompson, winner of the 2009 Federal Women's Program Heroine Award.

EPA's 2014 Proposal to Address the Management of Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals. The Agency is in the process of developing a new proposal. More information.

Epinephrine Fact Sheet: This fact sheet provides information to assist healthcare facilities with hazardous waste determinations regarding epinephrine wastes (PO42). For Information on state rules, download PharmWaste Technologies state summary.

Need help in carrying out your waste reduction, mercury elimination, or environmental compliance program? Practice Greenhealth can show you the way.

New Library Feature
added to HERC

The HERCenter has special pages covering your state's rules for the following topics:

RCRA/Hazardous Waste | Universal Waste | Regulated Medical Waste
OSHA | Mercury | Air Pollution | Asbestos | C&D Debris

News & Events

  • 01/29/15 Charleston Area Medical Center fined for hazardous waste violations at 3 hospitals [more ]

  • 01/26/15 Management of Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals, EPA's 2015 Proposal to Address the Management of Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals [more ]

  • 01/23/15 How Doctors Can Help Reduce Pharmaceutical Pollution [more ]

  • 01/15/15 EPA to Propose Health Care Facility-Specific Regulations for the Management of Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals Under RCRA [more ]

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    The information contained in this site is provided for your review and convenience. It is not intended to provide legal advice with respect to any federal, state, or local regulation. You should consult with legal counsel and appropriate authorities before interpreting any regulations or undertaking any specific course of action.

    Please note that many of the regulatory discussions on HERC refer to federal regulations. In many cases, states or local governments have promulgated relevant rules and standards that are different and/or more stringent than the federal regulations. Therefore, to assure full compliance, you should investigate and comply with all applicable federal, state and local regulations.

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