Some examples of biological hazards (biohazards) include certain bacteria, viruses, and medical waste. Next time you visit your doctor, take a quick look around the examination room and you will likely see biohazard containers labeled with this symbol. This symbol signifies a biohazard and any container donning it should be handled with caution.
Biohazard Examples: a Closer Look
A biohazard is defined as any biological substances that pose a threat to the health of living organisms. By now you know that biohazards can include certain bacteria, viruses and medical waste. But what is medical waste? Which bacteria are harmful? Medical waste is any waste materials generated at hospitals and healthcare or medical research facilities. This can include:
- Human blood and blood products.
- Human body fluids, including semen, vaginal secretions, amniotic fluid, and pleural fluid.
- Microbiological wastes, including discarded specimen cultures, discarded live and attenuated viruses, and disposable culture dishes.
- Pathological waste, including waste biopsy materials, human tissues, organs and body parts, and anatomical parts from autopsy, surgeries, and procedures.
- Sharps waste, including used syringes, scalpels, broken glass that is contaminated with blood or potentially infectious material, and IV tubing with the needle attached.
Bacteria that are harmful to humans, and therefore considered a biohazard, include staphylococcus, Pseudomonas, Salmonella, E-coli, and methicillin resistant staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA), to name a few. Viruses of significant concern include human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), Hepatitis B (HBV), and Hepatitis C (HCV). Everyone should use caution when handling human blood and body fluids. If you find yourself in a situation that requires you to handle such substances, reaching out to a professional bioremediation specialist is the best way to protect yourself and prevent infection. Aftermath is an industry leader in bioremediation with almost 20 years of experience. Please reach out to us day or night for assistance.