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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

116.78 WASTE MANAGEMENT.
    Subdivision 1. Segregation. All untreated infectious waste must be segregated from other
waste material at its point of generation and maintained in separate packaging throughout
collection, storage, and transport. Infectious waste must be packaged, contained, and transported
in a manner that prevents release of the waste material.
    Subd. 2. Labeling. All bags, boxes, and other containers used to collect, transport, or store
infectious waste must be clearly labeled with a biohazard symbol or with the words "infectious
waste" written in letters no less than one inch in height.
    Subd. 3. Reusable containers. Containers which have been in direct contact with infectious
waste must be disinfected prior to reuse.
    Subd. 3a. Waste containers. Noninfectious mixed municipal solid waste generated by a
facility must be placed for containment, collection, and processing or disposal in containers that
are sufficiently transparent that the contents of the containers may be viewed from the exterior of
the containers. The operator of a mixed municipal solid waste facility may not refuse to accept
mixed municipal solid waste generated by a facility that complies with this subdivision, unless the
operator observes that the waste contains sharps or other infectious waste.
    Subd. 4. Sharps. Sharps, except those generated from a household or from a farm operation
or agricultural business:
(1) must be placed in puncture-resistant containers;
(2) may not be compacted or mixed with other waste material whether or not the sharps are
decontaminated unless it is part of an infectious waste decontamination process approved by the
commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency that will prevent exposure during transportation
and disposal; and
(3) may not be disposed of at refuse-derived fuel facilities or at other facilities where waste
is hand sorted.
    Subd. 5. Pathological waste. Pathological waste must be managed according to sanitary
standards established by state and federal laws or regulations for the disposal of the waste.
    Subd. 6. Storage. Infectious and pathological waste must be stored in a specially designated
area that is designed to prevent the entry of vermin and that prevents access by unauthorized
persons.
    Subd. 7. Compaction and mixture with other wastes. Infectious waste may not be
compacted or mixed with other waste materials prior to incineration or disposal. Compaction
is acceptable if it is part of an infectious waste system, approved by the commissioner of the
Pollution Control Agency, that is designed to prevent exposure during storage, transportation,
and disposal.
    Subd. 8. Disposal. Except for disposal procedures specifically prescribed, this section and
section 116.81 do not limit disposal methods for infectious and pathological waste.
    Subd. 9. Disposal of infectious waste by ambulance services. Any infectious waste, as
defined in section 116.76, subdivision 12, produced by an ambulance service in the transport or
care of a patient must be properly packaged and disposed of at the destination hospital or at the
nearest hospital if the patient is not transported. A hospital must accept the infectious waste if it is
properly packaged according to the standards the hospital uses for packaging its own infectious
wastes. The hospital may charge the ambulance service a reasonable fee for disposal of the
infectious waste. Nothing in this subdivision shall require a hospital to accept infectious waste if
the waste is of a type not generated by the hospital or if the hospital cannot safely store the waste.
A hospital that accepts infectious waste under this subdivision is not subject to those provisions
of section 116.79, subdivision 4, paragraph (a), that apply to the storage or decontamination of
infectious or pathological waste generated at a site other than the hospital.
    Subd. 10. Disposal of infectious waste by public health agencies and programs providing
school health services. Any infectious waste, as defined in section 116.76, subdivision 12,
produced by an eligible board of health, community health board, or public health nursing agency
or a program providing school health services under section 121A.21, must be properly packaged
and may be disposed of at a hospital. For purposes of this subdivision, an "eligible board of
health, community health board, or public health nursing agency" is defined as a board of health,
community health board, or public health nursing agency located in a county with a population of
less than 40,000. A hospital must accept the infectious waste if it is properly packaged according
to the standards the hospital uses for packaging its own infectious wastes. The hospital may
charge an eligible board of health, community health board, or public health nursing agency or a
program providing school health services a reasonable fee for disposal of the infectious waste.
Nothing in this subdivision shall require a hospital to accept infectious waste if the waste is of
a type not generated by the hospital or if the hospital cannot safely store the waste. A hospital
that accepts infectious waste under this subdivision is not subject to those provisions of section
116.79, subdivision 4, paragraph (a), that apply to the storage or decontamination of infectious or
pathological waste generated at a site other than the hospital.
History: 1989 c 337 s 4; 1990 c 568 art 2 s 3,4; 1991 c 344 s 2,3; 1993 c 249 s 27; 1Sp1993
c 1 art 9 s 3,4; 1998 c 397 art 11 s 3