Frequently asked questions
Daniels’ patented Sharpsmart system has a number of unique aspects that set it apart from other sharps container systems, regardless of whether those systems use disposable or reusable containers.
The following is a very brief collection of some of the most common questions that we are asked about the Sharpsmart system.
We realize that you may wish to ask many other questions relating to other Daniels' products and services, or you may want us to answer your question in greater detail. If you’d like any more information or if you want to ask a question that isn’t listed here, please contact us and we’ll be happy to help.
Q. Can we be sure that Sharpsmart collectors are completely decontaminated (including prions) and there is no risk of cross infection between hospitals?
Sharps collectors are not a patient-use device. Several decades of commercial use, along with Guidelines from the US Centers for Disease Control1 confirm the innocuousness of sharps containers in disease transmission risk.
Similarly, the unlikely presence of prions in a sharps collector is of no risk to patients, staff or factory workers. However, Sharpsmart procedures assume pathogens are present and the wash process has undergone stringent testing and validation by independent microbiologists and/or government health agencies in six countries. Furthermore, validation procedures show the Washsmart process removes all protein.
Sharpsmarts and associated reusable sharps collectors have been used for over 15 years in more than 500 hospitals worldwide, without a single suggestion of cross-infection.
1 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Guidelines for Environmental Infection Control in Health-Care Facilities. Recommendations of CDC and the Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC), 2003. U.S. Dept HHS, (CDC) Atlanta, GA.
Daniels owns the Sharpsmart containers and supplies them to customers to use based on a service fee similar to a ‘rental’. Daniels owns the molds for its containers and because it uses three manufacturing plants to make containers, and has plus regional warehouses in the USA, can ensure continuity of supply of new stock.
Daniels Sharpsmart, Inc. is part of the Daniels Corporation International which operates in seven countries and has thousands of customers internationally and in the USA. Founded in 1986, Daniels is the only company to have been continuously servicing clients with reusable sharps containers for 24 years without any change in ownership.
Daniels owns and operates medical waste treatment plants and Washsmart processing plants, along with transport fleets, in a number of key locations throughout the USA, enabling service provision in most of the contiguous States.
The Washsmart system of emptying and washing containers is designed, built and maintained by Daniels’ engineers. Over 2 million Sharpsmart containers are processed in Washsmart plants each year throughout the USA and Canada.
Daniels complies with all applicable Federal, State and local regulations and is proud to have set the US bench mark for safety and quality in reusable container processing. For more information on Standards and regulations, click here.
Q. How safe is the Sharpsmart system from people being able to put their hands in the container and pull out sharps?
An international study has proven Sharpsmart to be a safer containment system1 with no reported incidents of hand-entry and retrieval of sharps and not a single reported injury due to container penetration.
Sharpsmart containers are designed to be open at all times until closed for disposal. The patented counter-balanced tray together with adherence to recommended mounting heights ensure sharps are not accessible once discarded.
1"Sharps injury reduction using Sharpsmart™ – a reusable sharps management system.” Grimmond, T et al, Journal of Hospital Infection Volume 54, Issue 3, July 2003.
Sharpsmart containers were specifically designed to be cabinet-free so as to minimize wall space and maximize container volume. With the largest safety aperture of any sharps container, one-handed disposal of sharps is easy and there is no secondary cabinet that misdirected sharps can fall into. Daniels’ Human Factor Analysis studies ensured a product design that is based on clinical staff needs and behavior.
Unlike point-first, vertical-drop sharps containers, Sharpsmart’s counterbalanced tray prevents overfilling, inhibits entry of small hands and inhibits sharps removal. The unique, patented counterbalanced tray was engineered with low-weight sensitivity enabling a 0.5ml insulin syringe to be deposited automatically. The large safety aperture virtually eliminates deposit injuries, which is the most common cause of container-associated injuries among sharps containers with narrow apertures.
Sharps management costs (containerization plus sharps injury costs) are less with Sharpsmarts. Hard costs (cost of purchasing containers) are typically similar to other container systems.
The Sharpsmart system gives the best return on sharps-reduction investment. Compared with other engineered safety devices such as needle-less systems and safety syringes (costing several times more than the standard devices they are replacing), the Sharpsmart system offers a significant reduction in sharps injuries for a similar cost as current sharps containers.
In their efforts to reduce sharps injuries to staff, healthcare organisations often spend huge amounts of money on implementing systems and purchasing safety devices that are proven to cause fewer injuries. The Sharpsmart system is one of the few sharps safety devices that is both proven to reduce sharps injuries1 and is comparably priced with the device it replaces.
1“Sharps injury reduction using Sharpsmart™ – a reusable sharps management system.” Grimmond, T et al, Journal of Hospital Infection Volume 54, Issue 3, July 2003.
In an average hospital, a Sharpsmart container, over an estimated 10 year period, would be reused approximately 100-200 times. As a requirement of the United States Federal Drug Administration (FDA), manufacturers are required to prove their products meet Standards tests on their last cycle i.e. they must be as safe on their 200th use as on their 1st. For Sharpsmarts this meant testing them to Standards tests after 200 cycles or uses.
However, in its successful 510(k) submission to the FDA, Sharpsmart subjected its containers to 500 hyper-cycles (repeatedly filling with sharps, simulated transport vibration, decanting and sanitisation) before Standards testing. Sharpsmart containers passed all tests.
No other sharps container has been subjected to such severe testing.
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