Used Needles

Hi All, I was just interested in the disposal of MTX needles as my purple bin only takes 4 pens and is then full I then have to get another prescription from my GP for another one, is this the normal procedure as the chemist informs me that I have to get a prescription, you would think that you could exchange when you return your old box to the chemist, do they do a larger purple bin? My yellow bin for Benepali is quite large. Thankyou in anticipation.

25 Replies

  • Yes they need to be prescribed but my go out it on repeat prescription force. So i take the full one to Boots and they keep one there for me. Maybe your chemist and GP could arrange that x

  • Hi ive got a big yellow sharps bin been using it for 8 months and there's still quite a bit of space left! I got it from rheummy nurse and when its full Ineed to take it back to the clinic M x

  • I do have a large yellow bin but was informed by the Benepali nurse that MTX needles must go in a purple bin.

  • The bin is yellow but the lid should be purple. The DoH produced a lid colour coding scheme for producers of hazardous and non-hazardous waste to follow. Purple is for cytotoxic & cytostatic syringes & pens.

  • Many thanks for the clarification

  • Mine in yellow but with a purple lid says for crytotoxic & crytostatic waste

  • Yes I was on mtx until recently and also got the mini size sharps bins. My chemist said GPs can't prescribe bigger and they can't order them anyway. I just got into the habit of ordering a new box every 4wks at the same time as my mtx. I tended to return them once I had a collection of about 4. I'm sure it must cost the nhs more to do it this way x

  • I get 2 bins a month now, on prescription, and have to arrange for a pick-up from the local council when needed.

  • Yes they told me it's just changed as I used to take them to gp surgery and they would just give me another. But now it's prescription here.

  • Hi I get my sharps bins from my Rhuematology department. When it's full I take it back and collect a new one

  • It would be interesting to know what colour of bin they supply.

  • They supply a purple bin for cytotoxic

  • Thanks for that Matilda, the problem that I have my purple bin only takes 3 MTX needles and then it is full.

  • Gosh Jackadoodle.lots of differences! Good post.

  • Maybe try your Rhuematology department as my gp gave me a small box which would only take a couple of used pens

  • I'm fortunate. One of the Practice Nurses ordered samples of sharps bins & they sent her something like 50 purple lidded ones so she just gives me a couple at a time, no prescription needed. They're Sharpsafe 3 litre bins & take approx 20 pens, the same as this

    Previously I used to get smaller ones which held about 6 pens, request them on repeat prescription & get them from my chemists. I still return full boxes to my GP Surgery, lid secured & my name written on the label.

  • Yes they do need to be prescribed but I get it from the company who supply my toxicillimab and they only take 4 pens

  • But no one told me it needs to have a purple lid? I know it's cytotoxic but I wasn't told by my rheumy nurse??

  • I have been on MTX for some time now and was unaware of the needles protocol until I started Benepali a few weeks ago it was then that the training nurse explained the procedure to me.

  • I used to get bins from healthcare at home when they delivered the pens, always purple topped of varying sizes but never a problem. Interestingly I thought the bin colours was an European wide thing, but in France I now have green topped bins that I swap a full one for an empty one at the chemist - no prescription needed. When I was first given a green topped one I asked about it, and was told they treat all the bins as hazardous waste in this area.

  • I have a purple topped one and it holds about 40 used pens. I've just had a new one (last week). I take the full one along when I have my 4-weekly bloodvtests and the practice nurse swaps it.

  • You can get purple topped cytotoxic sharps boxes from Amazon for about £4.99. They are 7 litres and last for about six months. Yes, you have to pay, but it only comes to £10 a year and saves a lot of hassle. I'd keep the small ones for going on holiday with, though you can buy those from Amazon as well.

  • Mine were 'sanctioned' by the specialist nurse, and supplied by the council. I just ring the council dept to arrange collection of old and delivery of new bins. They give larger ones which hold about 20 pens. All yellow though.

  • I have a large yellow bin with purple lid that takes about 3-4 months supply of used Metoject pens. My pharmacy and GP surgery wont issue them or receive the full bins, I have to call in to my rheumatology department and the nurses there instantly know what I've come for when they see the purple lidded bin. It's not too much of an inconvenience as I see my rheumatologist every 3 months, but patients that only visit 6-12 monthly it would mean going out of your way to replace your sharps bin.

  • I used to have a small yellow bin which only held about 4 pens too! Ridiculous! I was always tearing my hands as it was difficult to get the pens in! I was given this by the GP. These were the only ones they were allowed to give out!!!

    So I spoke to my consultant and he said he'd speak to the nurses at the hospital. I have been given a much larger box and been told when it is full, I ring the RA nurses and they'll arrange for someone to collect the sharps box and at the same time bring me my new one!

    Excellent service x

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