Executive Council

Authorizes Release:

Chief of Staff for the President

Responsible Area:

Athletics Office

Review Cycle:

Annually or as required

Last Review:

August 2023

Related Policies and Additional References:



Sport competition has an inherent risk of injury. Therefore, the risk of exposure to other individual’s blood is at a higher level. Like any other healthcare facility, the athletic training room should also be considered a healthcare facility that will frequently deal with the presence of bio hazardous waste material on a regular basis. In such situations, it is important to take the proper precautions to decrease the chances of spreading Blood borne pathogens. This program will set the protocol with the handling, disposal, and management of bio hazardous materials at St. Mary’s University.


Biohazard: Biological substances that pose a threat to the health of living organisms, primarily that of humans. This can include medical waste or samples of a microorganism, virus, or toxin (from a biological source) that can impact human health.

Biohazard Waste: Any form of material that is considered to be contaminated with blood, including any body fluid (such as vomit, feces, urine, or saliva that contains blood). These materials are to be considered bio hazardous waste at all times, even if there are no know pathogens contained in the blood or body fluid. Waste may include, but is not limited to, clothing, sponges/gauze, needles/lances, band aids, etc.

Blood borne Pathogens: Are defined as disease-causing microorganisms that can be transmitted by contact through blood or other bodily secretions. Blood borne pathogens of concern include Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, or HIV. Below are some definitions that will assist you in managing situations where Blood borne pathogens may be present.

Contaminated: Any material that contains the presence of blood or other infectious materials.

Decontamination: The use of physical or chemical means to remove or destroy blood-borne pathogens on a surface or item to the point where they are no longer capable of transmitting infectious particles. Commercial solutions (i.e. CaviCide or Whizzer) are usually used to decontaminate. Use such solutions as directed to ensure proper decontamination is performed.

Biohazard/Blood-borne Pathogen Training

Staff members (including but not limited to coaches, assistant coaches, managers, athletic trainers, and student athletic trainers) all have the possibility to come into contact with bio hazardous waste and Blood borne Pathogens. Therefore, it is required for all these individuals to have training in dealing with bio hazardous waste. St. Mary’s University will provide Blood borne Pathogen training for all members of the athletic department who are associated with this risk. The training will be provided at the expense of the athletic department and will be instructed by a certified instructor. A photocopy of the certification of completion of Blood borne Pathogen Training must be kept on file for every individual.

Personal Protective Equipment

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) refers to protective equipment designed to protect the wearer’s body from transmission of Blood borne Pathogens. The following is PPE that is available for use in the St. Mary’s University Athletic Training Department and should be in close proximity during ALL sporting events.

Disposable Gloves: Gloves that are to be disposed of properly after each single use. Regular and latex-free Nitrile gloves are available in the Athletic Training Room.

CPR Face Shield: A plastic sheet used as a shield between the victim and the CPR administrator to prevent the swapping of body fluids or vomit to be transmitted from person to person. A face shield will be available in biohazard kits at every event as well as in the Athletic Training Room.

CPR Pocket Mask: A plastic masked used in CPR to create a breathing barrier between the administrator and the victim to prevent swapping of body fluids or vomit from being transmitted from person to person. A pocket mask will be available in the emergency response kit and in the Athletic Training Room.

CPR Bag Valve w/Mask: A breathing apparatus to administer breaths during CPR to reduce the chances of transmitting body fluids or vomit between the administrator and the victim. A bag valve and mask will be available in the emergency response kit and in the Athletic Training Room.

Hand Sanitizer: Hand sanitizer solutions are a supplement or alternative to hand washing after handling hazardous material. It is important to note that this is NOT a substitute for washing your hands. It is to be used in cooperation of hand washing. Hand sanitizer will be provided in a biohazard kit at all sporting events as well as in the Athletic Training Room.

Universal Precautions

The principles of infection control remain constant. Universal Precautions are standards of practice to help prevent the spread of Blood borne Pathogens. Universal Precautions should be followed by every healthcare provider as well as other members of St. Mary’s University that have the possibility of coming into contact with blood or other body fluids. The components of Universal Precautions include:

  • Personal protective equipment, e.g., wearing gloves, gowns, eye protection and other
  • protective gear;
  • Hand washing;
  • Decontamination; e.g., appropriate cleaning methods to decontaminate surfaces, objects, etc.;
  • Waste disposal; e.g., liquid or non-liquid form, double bagging and labeling.

Note: Treat all human blood and potentially infectious body fluids as if they are known to contain blood-borne pathogens.

Handling and Disposal of Biohazard Waste

Anytime a staff member is to come into contact with body fluids, including blood, they should practice Universal Precautions.

Biohazard Kits: Biohazard kits must be available at all competitions to both home and visiting teams for practices and games. St. Mary’s University Athletic Training Staff will dispose of any and all bio hazardous waste during home events. When St. Mary’s University teams travel, the home team will dispose of bio hazardous waste. St. Mary’s staff should not travel back with bio hazardous waste, unless the contaminated material is considered contaminated laundry.

Contaminated Waste Disposal: All contaminated waste should be discarded in a properly marked “Biohazard” waste container. The biohazard waste container is a red container with the standard biohazard label sign on the lid. Contaminated waste may also be placed in red biohazard bags and tied shut first, then placed in the large biohazard container.

Contaminated Laundry: These may include soiled jerseys, uniforms, other washable equipment, and towels. Athletes should not be allowed to continue in competition with contaminated clothing. Contaminated jerseys or other player equipment must be removed and washed or decontaminated and the player must use a new jersey if the contaminated jersey is unable to be decontaminated without washing. Contaminated laundry must be soaked in a disinfecting cleaner then washed in hot water and sufficient laundry detergent. If laundry is to be washed at a later time, the contaminated laundry must be placed in a biohazard bag and tied, separate from any other contaminated waste.

Contaminated Sharps: Contaminated sharps include needles or scalpels that contain blood or other body fluids on them. The athletic training room housed a sharps container, a puncture resistant container. Any one time use needles or scalpels should be disposed of in this container. Do not place these items in a plastic biohazard bag for transport. If traveling, dispose these items in home team’s sharps container.

Note: Never replace the top of needles or scalpels before placing in the sharps container. This increases the risk of puncture or cutting yourself.

Other Contaminated Objects: Often times, athletes will be moving after an injury that involves bleeding to their body. This presents the possibility of dripping, spraying, or smearing blood on flooring or tables. In such cases, these objects must be decontaminated using proper disinfecting agents. They must be used as directed on the product label. In cases when there is pools of blood, proper biohazard cleanup using an approved biohazard blood cleaner must be used as directed. Allow for the cleaner to properly disinfect the area. If cleaner is not available, then use a mixture of water and bleach with a ratio of 10:1 dilution; allow for the mixture to sit two to three minutes.

Biohazard Exposure

In the event that a staff member or individual comes into contact with blood or other body fluids that could contain blood; that staff member must notify the Head Athletic Trainer immediately. An incident report must be completed as soon as possible in order to recall what occurred during the exposure. Exposure includes, but is not limited to blood entering cuts or open wounds, the eyes, the mouth or any other body opening, or through a needle stick or scalpel cut. The incident report must be completed and the exposure protocol must then be followed.

Biohazard Waste Disposal and Pick-Up

Bio hazardous waste must be handled with caution. Trained individuals will be transporting waste to the university’s pick-up area. Physical Plant employees have been trained in transporting these wastes. Pick-up will be scheduled quarterly.

Note: Available in the Administration and Finance Office is the Medical Waste Transport Form.

St. Mary’s University Campus – Chain of Custody

The purpose of this document is to describe the procedure to secure and transport the Medical Waste containers from the Student Health Center (SHC) and the Alumni Athletics & Convocation Center (AA&CC) to the Physical Plant Chemical Storage Facility and provide documentation for Chain of Custody of this transfer.


The process to pick up Medical Waste generated at the SHC or AACC has been changed to centralize the pickup location to Treadaway Hall, Physical Plant Loading Dock. Prior to this change the approved Medical Waste vendor (Stericycle) picked up the waste at the specific locations at SHC and AACC facilities. Centralizing the pickup location requires the Housekeeping division to pick up the Medical Waste from each department and move the containers to the Physical Plant Chemical Storage Facility in preparation for pickup at the Loading Dock. This document serves as instructions for properly securing and transporting as well as the Chain of Custody between departments.


This Form is to be completed for each pick up of Medical Waste that is to be transported on campus between departments. Personnel responsible for picking up the waste containers are to secure the bags and lid of the container (tub or box) to ensure that the contents will not spill during transport. Straps or duct tape can be used but should not deform the container. The container is to be marked with the department from where it originated. Pickup personnel are also responsible to position and secure the container on the transport vehicle to minimize the risk of the container falling or otherwise being damaged.

Note: The container must not be filled to a point where the lid cannot be properly closed and secured. If the container is overfilled it is the responsibility of the department that generated the waste to reallocate the waste into proper containers that can be properly closed and secure. Pickup personnel are not to handle the medical waste inside the containers or transport containers that are overfilled.

Record Keeping

This Form and the Transport Manifests from Stericycle are maintained and filed in the Facilities Services Office for a minimum of 30 years.

Back to top