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BHS Providing Safer Disposal of Sharps
May 29, 2008

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

State Clinics at BMC Designated as Sharps Container Disposal Site

PITTSFIELD, MA – Adhering to the watchwords “be smart, be careful, be aware, be safe,” the State Clinics at Berkshire Medical Center has been designated by The Department of Public Health as a Depository for used syringes and other devices that puncture the skin, otherwise known as sharps. The disposal unit is located at the State Clinics, which is currently located at the Neighborhood Health Center at 510 North Street.
Syringes and lancets are used by a variety of individuals who are managing healthcare issues at home, including individuals with diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, hemophilia, as well as a number of other health care issues. “The goal of this program is to provide a safe disposal site for sharps, to prevent accidental sharps injuries, prevent the re-use or sharing of syringes or other sharps that can transmit infectious diseases, such as hepatitis and HIV, and to assure that syringes and sharps are not disposed of in a manner that puts sanitation workers and other members of the community at risk of accidental exposure,” said Jackie Roy-Elliott BSN, RN, Director of the State Clinics at BMC.
Individuals using the service for the first time must bring all sharps in a puncture-resistant container, such as an empty one gallon bleach bottle, a one pound sealed coffee can, or a large plastic soda bottle. The State Clinics is unable to accept any syringes or sharps in glass containers, paper or plastic bags, or any loose syringes or sharps. At each visit, individuals will be given a standard sharps container for future deposits. There is no fee for any of the services provided.
The site will be available on Tuesday and Wednesdays from 12 noon to 1:00 p.m. For more information, contact Ms. Elliott at the State Clinics, 413-447-2654.



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