Two hospitals have agreed to pay nearly $400,000 in total fines to San Diego County for mishandling medical waste.
San Diego County settled civil lawsuits against Scripps Health and Sharp Memorial hospitals for improperly handling, transporting and storing medical waste at their facilities and at a San Diego city landfill, the county said in a news release.
Scripps Health will pay $272,870 and Sharp $102,939.
County Department of Environmental Health officials found multiple violations of the California Medical Waste Management Act and Hazardous Waste Control Act during various inspections of Scripps Health and Sharp Memorial Hospital facilities, and the Miramar landfill. Violations included unlawful disposal of medical and or hazardous waste such as blood and tissue; failing to separate medical waste properly and unlawful transportation of medical and hazardous waste.
Both hospitals agreed to follow proper waste disposal practices and to engage in additional projects to benefit the environment.
As part of the settlement and without admitting liability, Scripps Health will donate $16,000 to buy equipment for San Diego city inspectors at the Miramar landfill. Sharp Memorial will organize e-waste collection and composting projects for multiple years and will sponsor environmental educational programs.