SterAssure is a cost-saving environmentally friendly disposal system for bio-hazardous medical waste generated by hospitals and medical centers. Our machine sterilizes waste on site using steam and heat instead of the expensive and environmentally harmful methods currently employed across the industry.
Our product is vastly superior to all of our competitors in size, speed and efficiency. This unit does what others cannot. It does it cheaper, faster, is a "green" solution, and costs significantly less than anything currently offered.
"The cost-savings to the hospital will be tremendous."
SterAssure revolves around a piece of equipment that takes red bag waste, or hospital bio-hazard material, and not only reduces its volume but also sterilizes the waste. This makes it possible to take what was once hazardous material, and turn it into normal waste. Imagine a hospital or surgery center not having to pay an outside company to haul away their red bag waste but instead, sterilize it on property, and throw it in their normal trash dumpster. The cost-savings to the hospital will be tremendous. In addition to cost-savings, our system offers the hospital a “green” solution in that it eliminates the bio-hazardous material (via sterilization) as well as recycles most of the heat and water needed to perform the process. Our plan is to put these machines in every hospital around the world, making them the industry standard for red bag disposal.
Other Methods of Red Bag Waste Disposal
Haul Away Method
Sterilization by Incineration
There are multiple definitions used for Red Bag Waste (which is also referred to as regulated, infective, infectious, and biohazardous waste). A definition from OSHA defines biohazardous waste as:
Haul Away Method
There are many different companies that offer this solution to medical facilities, local or national companies but how they handle the waste can be drastically different. Some companies are taking the bio-hazardous material to special landfills, while others are taking the material to an approved disposal facility. These approved facilities either incinerate or use chemicals to sterilize the waste. There are problems with these methods such as burning plastics polluting the atmosphere, and the chemical treatment method is harmful to the environment while some items such as syringes may not be sterilized. Another major issue with the haul away method are ethics. If the company that is disposing of the waste does not follow the best practices, it opens the facility to lawsuits as well as exposing the public to health risks. The medical facility is also at the mercy of these companies as government regulations, fuel costs and other added expenses are passed on to the customer.
Sterilization by Incineration
What is Incineration?
Incineration is the process of the destruction of waste by converting the organic material to carbon dioxide and water vapors by fire.
Advantages of Incineration
Incineration remains a prevalent treatment method throughout the United States despite growing concern for the environment. There are advantages to incinerating medical waste which primarily include the fact that medical waste, once incinerated is reduced by about 90% in volume. Additionally, incineration assures the completed destruction and sterilization of medical waste. Another advantage to incineration is that almost any type of medical waste can be incinerated with the exception of items that contain mercury and plastics that contain PVC.
Disadvantages of Incineration
There are many disadvantages to incineration, such as potential pollution risks due to large amounts of emissions that result from the burning of regulated medical waste. Recently, many states have imposed very strict guidelines on pollution emissions which have caused the need for upgrades and many changes to medical waste incinerators in order to comply with emissions regulations. These changes have greatly increased the cost of incineration.
Incineration Being Supplemented by New Technologies
Chances are that incineration, though a widely used practice of medical waste treatment in the United States, will soon become obsolete to other treatment technologies. Today, about 80% of hospitals in California already use various alternatives to incineration as a result of emissions regulations within the state. Various factors account for medical facilities to decrease their dependence on incineration including:
Advantages of Chemical Treatments
There really are none, while you are treating biohazardous waste, the question looms of risk versus reward
Disadvantages of Chemical Treatments
The obvious disadvantage of chemical treatment systems is that they consume chemicals. In addition, even if they are effective in rendering the waste noninfectious, the products of the chemical reactions they undergo are present in the waste, and may pose problems of their own. However, chemical treatment systems are convenient, and may be suitable in some situations, particularly when small quantities of waste are involved.
One of the most common constituents of chemical treatment systems is chlorine, either in the form of sodium hypochlorite solution (common bleach), or as the more powerful (and correspondingly more hazardous) gas, chlorine dioxide. These compounds are relatively cheap and effective. However, in the course of reacting with organic compounds, they tend to form objectionable byproducts such as chloroform and other persistent toxins.
The chlorine compounds work by “oxidizing” (stripping electrons from) organic compounds, including the constituents of pathogenic microorganisms. The original “oxidizer” is, of course, atmospheric oxygen. Although it is, in fact, a fairly powerful oxidizing agent, ordinary oxygen is not harmful to, and is in fact essential for the survival of, many organisms including most of the pathogens in medical waste. However, when oxygen (O2) is converted to ozone (03), a much stronger oxidizer, it becomes toxic to most life forms. Ozone can readily be generated by passing an electric arc through ordinary oxygen gas. When used in a medical waste treatment system, ozone acts as an effective sterilizer, without the tendency to generate the types of by-products found with chlorine compounds. The major problem encountered with ozone systems is the need to avoid exposure to anyone in the vicinity of the treatment system, since ozone is highly injurious to lungs.
Alkaline agents are also used in medical waste treatment, either in highly corrosive form (sodium hydroxide, or lye), or in somewhat milder form (calcium oxide, or quicklime). Alkali tends to hydrolyze (decompose) proteins, among other effects. Apart from the cost of the reagents, the major disadvantage is the risk of contact, since alkaline solutions damage skin and lungs.
Disinfectants like glutaraldehyde and peracetic acid are also used for small-scale medical waste treatment.
SterAssure currently has permits for these units from the States of North Carolina and South Carolina. Our unit has been rigorously tested to exceed all requirements from State credentialing agencies.
Steam sterilization is approved in all 50 states but each state has their own methods of certification.
We are currently working with the State of Florida to obtain our permit with others to follow.
We have a rigorously tested, fully functioning, regulatory compliant machine. At its current size, it could easily handle the needs of a 200 bed hospital. This will be our “standard unit”. We have plans, however, to offer the unit in a variety of sizes to better suit the needs of the many different types of medical facilities. Maintenance plans will be available for a monthly fee should the facility feel more comfortable with us servicing the unit versus certifying an in-house maintenance employee.
|Process Rate||240 lbs per hour (Approximate)|
|Process Cycle Time and Rate||18 - 23 Minutes @ 80 Pounds Per Cycle|
|Typical Cycles per Hour||Three|
|Typical Volume Reduction||Waste is reduced from 1/3 - 1/2 of the original volume|
|Operating Cost||About 1 - 2 Cents per pound|
|Dimensions and Weight|
|Depth - Front to Back||75 Inches|
|Height (Open / Operating)||106 Inches|
|Floor Space Required||27 Square Feet|
|Electrical||208 Volts A.C. 3 PHASE 30 AMP|
|Water Requirements and Connection||3/4 inch Pipe Size @ 70 PSIG Minimum. 8 GPM|
|Water Consumption||14 Gallons Per Cycle (Approximately)|
|Steam Requirements and Connection||3/4 Inch Pipe Size @ 70 PSIG Minimum|
|Compressed Air Requirements||1/2 inch Pipe Size @ 80 PSIG Minimum|
|Drain Requirements||Floor Drain (Required 4 Inch Pipe Size (Recommended)|
|1 Inch Minimum ( 1 1 /4" Recommended)||Two Required|
|3 / 4" Minimum (1" Recommended)||One Required>|
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