August 2013
Volume 9, Issue 8

It’s Easy Being Green with the OnTraQ Compliance Manager

A waste handling system that eliminates inadvertent noncompliance

Organizations across all industries are striving to contribute to the long-term sustainability of the environment by segregating their waste streams, reducing the amount of waste-generating products they consume, and conserving energy. Environmental awareness is increasingly important to patients as well.

Adopting a strong position on environmental responsibility is one thing, but effectively and consistently executing a plan is quite another. With all of the waste streams that a dental practice must manage, complying with federal, state, and local regulations can be a challenge.

Dental Waste Streams

In addition to general trash, dental practices produce up to seven distinct waste streams, each of which must be segregated and disposed of properly. The waste streams include:

• sharps.

• red bag.

• unused medications.

• amalgam.

• photochemicals.

• lead foil.

• hazardous and nonhazardous chemical waste.

Each type of waste must be segregated and then treated/recycled/disposed of as required by relevant Environmental Pro­tection Agency/Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations, and any State Department of Health and/or other local requirements. Generally, all outgoing waste must be labelled by type, and either sent to or collected by an approved treatment/disposal vendor. With respect to general trash, practices should look to their local sanitation department for compliance with programs for the recycle/disposal of paper, plastic, and electronics waste.

Adding to the challenges associated with compliance is the requirement to maintain records of proper handling and disposal. Typically, inspectors ask for logs, which include manifests/proof of compliant recycling, handling, and disposal.

Reducing Complexity

The myriad of requirements for each waste stream can be confusing for staff. HealthFirst’s OnTraQ Compliance Manager software eliminates the risk of inadvertent noncompliance by providing functionality that allows the practice to:

• establish an effective set of processes for the recycle/disposal of all waste streams.

• assign team members responsibility and establish the frequency of tasks.

• set and send recurring automated reminders via text, e-mail, and within OnTraQ.

• confirm completed tasks.

• electronically archive waste processing records securely online.

• comply with all applicable (recordkeeping) regulations.

OnTraQ empowers practices to “TasQ, Trace, and Archive” the waste disposal workflow, saving time, reducing errors, and improving compliance. It was built to be flexible and allow a practice to use any provider of environmental products. HealthFirst’s OnTraQ offers a complete line of mail-back environmental services, which integrate seamlessly into OnTraQ, eliminating the need for data entry and obviating the need for pick-up services.

Final Thought

Using HealthFirst’s OnTraQ Compliance Manager helps dental practices stay compliant. OnTraQ makes compliance simple, repeatable, and reliable. It is now possible to manage the unique environmental requirements of the dental practice in a more responsible, efficient, and sustainable manner. Being green has never been so easy.

For more information, contact:

Dr. Don Cohen, Chief Compliance Officer HealthFirst
Phone: 800-331-1984


The preceding material was provided by the manufacturer. The statements and opinions contained therein are solely those of the manufacturer and not of the editors, publisher, or the Editorial Board of Inside Dentistry.

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