Written by Amy Piser
20 Jun 2024

What Does a Secure Sharps Container Look Like?

Sharps injuries are one of the most common injuries among healthcare workers, and these injuries can cause serious infections, such as HIV and hepatitis. The negative impact extends beyond the individual affected, impacting many parts of the entire healthcare organization.  These injuries are particularly common during the disposal process. The good news however is that according to Canada's Alliance for Sharps Safety and Needlestick Prevention, 80% of sharps injuries are preventable when the right safety-engineered equipment is implemented in addition to worker training and practice controls.  

The Daniels Health Sharpsmart container is designed to significantly reduce injuries caused during the disposal process. But beyond disposal, Sharpsmart does more to protect everyone in the healthcare environment. Thanks to their security features, Sharpsmart containers help to prevent sharps injuries throughout the entire generation and disposal process. 

But it’s not just sharps that can pose a risk. Leftover and expired medications can be a prime source for drug diversion, theft, and abuse. Enter Pharmasmart, another secure disposal container from Daniels which is designed to store leftover and expired medication prior to disposal without risk of those substances falling into the wrong hands. Understanding the essential elements of a secure container will help you make the best choice for your facility, ensuring you eliminate one of the most common security gaps in medication safety.


1 / Why Diversion Prevention is a Must for Canadian Healthcare Facilities

2 / What is a Secure Container?

3 / Choose Daniels Containers for Security; Enjoy their Ease and Convenience  

Why Diversion Prevention Is a Must for Canadian Healthcare Facilities

Just because sharps have been disposed of does not mean that no one may seek to access them. Partially-filled syringes disposed of in a sharps container may create a temptation for those seeking to abuse or obtain certain pharmaceuticals. Unfortunately, this risk is particularly high in healthcare settings.

Studies have found that approximately one in ten healthcare workers abuse controlled substances, which means that the potential for drug diversion and abuse requires a proactive approach. Any diversion, which is the illegal use or distribution of prescription medications by those unauthorized and not prescribed such medication, can place patients and staff at risk. However, when the diversion involves used sharps, the risk is compounded with the potential for serious health implication from used needles and syringes.

This is why safe practices regarding used sharps, as well as any leftover medications, are critical - and one key part of this is the use of secure containers. A properly used secure sharps container, like Sharpsmart, is a powerful first line of defence against unauthorized access and misuse of used needles and syringes. Secure containers, such as Daniels’ Pharmasmart, can also be used to dispose of leftover or expired medications safely and securely, in addition to unique solutions for controlled substances

What Is a Secure Container?

Secure containers like Daniels Sharpsmart and Pharmasmart are containers with safety features that help prevent injuries or the diversion of drugs. Health Canada recommends that sharps be disposed of in a puncture-resistant container located close to where they are used. But Daniels goes beyond this with its Sharpsmart containers and accessories, which have safety features that protect against sharps injuries and diversion. Similarly, Pharmasmart can be used for risk-free disposal of medication. Both Pharmasmart and Sharpsmart boast a set of safeguards to ensure the risk-free disposal of medications in an efficient and user-friendly design: 

Sharpsmart Features

Safety Tray

The Sharpsmart container has a unique safety tray which is gravity balanced, allowing for a convenient opening for disposing of items, while at the same time preventing access to the contents of the container. This unique design also helps better align disposed sharps, which maximizes the use of the container space. This means fewer full containers, making it not only safer, but also more cost-effective. When the container reaches its capacity, the safety tray remains engaged, preventing more sharps from being disposed of into the container. This eliminates the risk of sharps injuries due to overfilling. 

Tamper-Proof Locks

Tamper-proof side locks mean the container can never be accessed by anyone in the clinic environment. Once a container is full and these locks are applied, the container cannot be opened without a specialized tool, available only in our treatment facilities. 


The lid of the container has a leak-proof seal that prevents fluid leakage while the container is being transported. Containers without a leak-proof seal often pose a risk of fluid leakage.



Many sharps disposal containers are puncture resistant. But Sharpsmart containers go beyond this standard and are puncture-proof. This is done by using a medical grade hardened plastic casing which provides an additional layer of durability.

Clearview Window

While the built-in safety tray prevents overfilling, Sharpsmart also features a clearview window that allows personnel to view the fill-level within the container at any time. This means staff can better anticipate a full container and take steps to swap out full containers with empty ones when it’s convenient for them, rather than during a hectic time. 

Locking Brackets

Sharpsmart containers also feature locking wall brackets, which feature a unique key lock that prevents the container from being removed from the bracket. These locking brackets can be used where additional security is required. 

Locking Transporter

Full containers are transported and stored in locking transporters. This is essential to keep any drugs or needles from being diverted until they are ultimately disposed of.



Pharmasmart Features

The Pharmasmart also includes security measures to prevent tampering:


Key-Only Wall Removal

A pharmaceutical disposal container is only secure if it cannot be diverted. That’s why Pharmasmart containers are attached to the wall with locking brackets that require a key to unlock. This prevents tampering and unauthorized removal, which could result in access to its contents.

Irretrievable Contents

Pharmasmart containers have both temporary and permanent locks to prevent unauthorized access to the contents of the container. In addition, the hand-restricted opening ensures that no one can reach their hand inside, rendering the contents of the container inaccessible.  

Overfill Protection

The Pharmasmart container’s built-in safety tray protects the container from being overfilled, which could lead to access to disposed medication. This unique gravity-balanced tray is a cornerstone of what makes this and other Daniels containers so effective at safety and tamper-proofing. 

Choose Daniels Containers for Security; Enjoy their Ease and Convenience 

Beyond being extremely safe and tamper-proof, Daniels containers are also convenient. They come in many sizes and can be used with a variety of accessories that make them easy to transport and store. Each has been designed with hospital staff in mind, to provide the utmost practicality, even in intense, fast-paced environments.

Sharpsmart and Pharmasmart containers are both invaluable tools in any clinic’s efforts to prevent unauthorized access to leftover or expired medications, as well as used sharps and vials. Find out how easy it is to adopt Daniels waste containers into your healthcare setting. Connect with a Daniels expert who will guide you through the process of implementing your own anti-diversion efforts. 




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Amy Piser

Amy Piser

Clinical Waste Educator

With 26 years experience working in healthcare, Amy has implemented sustainability initiatives for over 100 hospitals across the United States and brings unique practice and compliance expertise to healthcare waste management.