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Wisconsin’s infectious waste regulations guidelines

Infectious waste – also known as biohazardous, red bag or regulated medical waste – must be segregated from other waste types and disinfected before it is disposed of in a solid waste landfill. Businesses and institutions should review the information on this page.

The difference between infectious waste and medical waste

Basically, infectious waste is waste that can pass on infectious diseases to people or animals, such as sharps (including hypodermic needles, syringes and lancets), blood or human tissue. Medical waste is infectious waste plus any non-infectious waste that may be mixed with them.

Note that medical waste does not mean all of the waste produced in a healthcare setting. Non-infectious materials from a healthcare facility are considered to be “medical waste” only if the generator mixes them with infectious waste or manages them as though they are infectious waste. Any other waste materials from a healthcare facility are not considered “medical waste” under Wisconsin law. If possible, these non-infectious items should be reused or recycled.

Items considered to be infectious waste

The following items are presumed to be infectious waste.

Items usually not considered to be infectious waste

The following are presumed not to be infectious waste.

Anyone generating or managing infectious waste must follow Wisconsin’s medical waste rules.

These requirements apply to all generators, including individual households are.

Administrative requirements

To find out if administrative requirements apply to you, see the following codes.

Those who generate or manage small quantities of infectious waste must segregate wastes and follow all safety-related requirements, but may be exempt from administrative requirements such as licensing and paperwork. This fact sheet will help you manage your infectious waste safely and may also help reduce your costs.

The basic safety requirements apply to all businesses and institutions that generate or manage infectious waste in Wisconsin. They address:

Businesses and institutions may have to file annual reports on the amounts they send off-site for treatment.

EPA ID numbers for infectious waste generators

The DNR does not require infectious waste generators to obtain EPA ID numbers. However, some infectious waste vendors require their customers to obtain an EPA ID number. The DNR provides EPA ID numbers at no cost upon request.

Segregating infectious waste

Segregation of wastes, also known as source separation, is mandatory at the time they are generated for all non-household infectious waste generators.

All facilities that generate infectious waste must keep adequate records

Regardless of whether your facility is exempt from filing a report, you need to maintain adequate records of the amounts of waste you generate, treat on-site and send off-site for treatment.  These records can include any of the following:

In addition, hospitals, clinics and nursing homes (unless exempt) must retain:

Documentation may be paper or electronic. You should store these records at your facility in a file that is secure yet accessible, in case the DNR or EPA asks to see them.  Be sure they are not discarded when people change positions or leave your facility.

Benefits of Using Healthcare Waste Management’s Wisconsin Medical Waste Disposal Services

As the name suggest we are a complete management team of your healthcare medical, biohazard, sharps and other wastes that is regulated. From pickup to destruction, we are the only company that handles your waste

  • We own the waste from pickup to destruction, no middleman, means no hidden cost.
  • Our state-of-the-art processing plants ensure the waste is disposed of as quickly and effectively as possible, with minimum impact to the environment.
  • With us it is our drivers, our trucks, our processing plants and our insurance. You can imagine the insurance one must have when they own their own processing plants.

Wisconsin About

Wisconsin is a U.S. state located in the north-central, Midwest and Great Lakes regions of the country. It is bordered by Minnesota to the west, Iowa to the southwest, Illinois to the south, Lake Michigan to the east, Michigan to the northeast, and Lake Superior to the north. Wisconsin is the 23rd largest state by total area and the 20th most populous. The state capital is Madison, and its largest city is Milwaukee, which is located on the western shore of Lake Michigan. The state is divided into 72 counties.

Wisconsin’s geography is diverse, having been greatly impacted by glaciers during the Ice Age with the exception of the Driftless Area. The Northern Highland and Western Upland along with a part of the Central Plain occupies the western part of the state, with lowlands stretching to the shore of Lake Michigan. Wisconsin is second to Michigan in the length of its Great Lakes coastline.

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Helpful Wisconsin Resources

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
101 S. Webster Street
Madison, Wisconsin 53707
(608) 266-2621
Wisconsin Department of Health Services
1 West Wilson Street
Madison, Wisconsin 53707
(608) 266-1865
Wisconsin Department of Transportation
2001 Bartillon Drive
Madison, Wisconsin 53704
(608) 264-7447

Wisconsin Information

The word Wisconsin originates from the name given to the Wisconsin River by one of the Algonquian-speaking Native American groups living in the region at the time of European contact. French explorer Jacques Marquette was the first European to reach the Wisconsin River, arriving in 1673 and calling the river Meskousing in his journal. Subsequent French writers changed the spelling from Meskousing to Ouisconsin, and over time this became the name for both the Wisconsin River and the surrounding lands. English speakers anglicized the spelling from Ouisconsin to Wisconsin when they began to arrive in large numbers during the early 19th century. The legislature of Wisconsin Territory made the current spelling official in 1845.

The Algonquian word for Wisconsin and its original meaning have both grown obscure. While interpretations vary, most implicate the river and the red sandstone that lines its banks. One leading theory holds that the name originated from the Miami word Meskonsing, meaning “it lies red”, a reference to the setting of the Wisconsin River as it flows through the reddish sandstone of the Wisconsin Dells. Other theories include claims that the name originated from one of a variety of Ojibwa words meaning “red stone place”, “where the waters gather”, or “great rock”.

Wisconsin Medical Waste Disposal Service Area

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