If you run an all-night cafe or bar in a popular area, you may find that you get some needles left in your bathroom facilities by IV drug users. It is important for the safety of your staff (who need to clean the bathrooms) and other customers that you have facilities to dispose of the needles. Here are some tips.
Place wall-mounted sharps containers in the bathrooms
If you are having an issue with sharps being left behind, it is a good idea to choose a sturdy, wall-mounted container. (Lighter, temporary, shelf-top containers are prone to be knocked over, damaged or removed, and so are more suitable for medical offices). It is important to have a container in all cubicles, as many people may be trying to hide their drug habit or medication needs. In many popular facilities, the cubicles are cramped, so it can be a good idea to mount the container in the back of the cubicle rather than on the walls to make the space easy to navigate for all users. Be sure to test the planned location so that it can be reached by anyone using the facility (including shorter people).
Place a reminder poster on the cubicle door
While the containers are being installed, its also a good idea to put some signs on the door reminding users to check that they have not left anything behind. In most cases, people want to leave the cubicle in a reasonable condition, so having a sign that they see as they are leaving cubicle can help to prompt them to check that their sharps have been disposed of (as well as cleaning any other mess that they may have left behind).
Arrange for the containers to be regularly emptied
Your day-to-day staff cannot open and remove the sharps, so you need to have a professional service visit your location and empty the containers regularly. If the containers get full, then sharps cannot be put inside, and you may end up with needles on the ground and in the surrounding area.
Installing wall-mounted, sturdy sharps disposal container can help to keep your bar or cafe free from loose sharps. Having a sensible approach to sharps removal ensures that other customers and staff are safe and do not come into contact with used needles. Contact a medical rubbish removal service to get some more information on sharps collection for your venue.