Cost of living support

Colchester City Council is providing support for residents facing the cost of living crisis.

Clinical Waste Collections

Types of clinical waste, what can be collected and how to arrange a collection


  • Types of clinical waste
  • Collection Service

We currently provide free collection services for clinical waste and sharps boxes in Colchester. These services are for all residents who self-administer medical treatment at home.

Clinical waste

Clinical waste is any waste from healthcare activities that could pose a risk to public health or the environment if not disposed of correctly. 

Hazardous waste

Hazardous (infectious) waste requires specialist collection and disposal, it must never be put in your normal household bins. Hazardosus waste includes any medical instrument that could cause punctures or cuts (sharps), or anything that could be harmful to others, this includes:

  • hypodermic needles
  • syringes with needles
  • infusion sharps or scalpels
  • waste and human hygiene products from infectious disease cases
  • swabs
  • wound dressings

 It should be stored in special orange sacks and be collected and disposed of safely.

Offensive (non-infectious) waste

Other clinical waste that may be offensive in nature but has no identified risk of infection, this includes:

  • incontinence wear/pads
  • colostomy bags
  • catheters

If the waste is not infectious, it can be double-bagged and put in your household bin. If you have more than three black bags of waste every two weeks, you can store this waste in yellow tiger bags ready for collection by our clinical waste service.

Sharps collection

We do not provide empty boxes, but you can get sharps boxes on prescription from your GP. Any orange or tiger bags you have requested a collection for will be replaced by our contractor Medisort on your collection day.

How to book a collection

To book a collection you must register online and fill out the collection form. Once you have requested a collection, Medisort will call you within 24 hours to confirm the collection date.

You can tell us where you would like your waste collected from. For example, on your front porch, by a side gate or have the driver knock on your door.

Collections are made Monday to Friday between 9am and 3pm.We do not currently provide a collection service for businesses.

Book a collection

Further information

For help and advice, you can call us on 01206 282700 - press 1 for residential rubbish and recycling and 4 for clinical waste collections.

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