Disposal of linen

The correct disposal of linen plays an important part in infection control.

Incorrect disposal of linen is a potential hazard, not only for clients but for all health care workers.


Linen skip, appropriately coloured linen bags (check local policy), apron, plastic bag (for soiled linen), red alginate bag (soluble for infected linen), red linen bag (for infected linen) and gloves (if in contact with soiled or infected linen) are required.


  • Apply apron and wash hands
  • Take linen skip and appropriate linen bag to bedside
  • If linen is soiled or infected use a gloves
  • When removing the linen always fold linen away from apron and place immediately in either a plastic bag for soiled linen or in red alginate bag/ soluble for infected linen (check local policy)
  • Do not overfill bag and always seal alginate bags before leaving the bedside and do not mix clean, soiled and infected linen
  • Place in appropriate linen bag and remove to sluice area, seal when 3 ⁄ 4 full and arrange removal by the portering staff
  • Remove apron and wash hands