Information for non-healthcare facilities

Information about the minimum requirements for non-healthcare facilities such as homes, hotels, or other lodgings, for the handling of waste from people with suspected or confirmed COVID-19.

What is COVID-19?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses, some of which cause illness in humans. COVID-19 is a new strain of coronavirus that causes symptoms like fever, cough, runny nose and shortness of breath. In severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia.

Transmission of COVID-19

COVID-19 is spread to other people through contaminated droplets spread by coughing or sneezing, or by contact with contaminated hands, surfaces or objects.

The risk of transmission of COVID-19 when handling waste is low. The handling of waste should be done in accordance with safe routine procedures.

To prevent transmission of COVID-19 while managing waste, usual good hygiene measures are recommended.

Isolating with suspected or confirmed COVID-19

Waste items from people in isolation with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 in non-healthcare facilities is classified as general solid waste (putrescible).

Advice for people in isolation

  • Dispose of all used personal care items such as tissues, disposable masks, gloves in a rubbish bin that’s lined with a plastic bag.
  • When the bin is three-quarters full, tie-off the plastic bag to prevent spillage of the contents. Avoid touching the inside of the bag and dispose of the bag into the general household red-lidded rubbish bin.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. You can use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser if your hands are not visibly dirty.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

This advice will be reviewed and adjusted when or if more information becomes available.

Key contacts

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