Tag: Waste

Carbon-conscious health systems phase out desflurane anesthesia gas to reduce emissions

Editor's Note Citing environmental concerns, multiple health systems have stopped using desflurane anesthesia gas, Becker’s Hospital Review reported on May 7. Citing the Philadelphia Inquirer, the outlet notes that Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and Marlton, N.J.-based Virtua Health are among those that have eliminated the gas so far, with the…

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By: Matt Danford
May 15, 2024
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Penn Medicine anesthesia, waste initiatives boost OR sustainability

Editor's Note Penn Medicine has made significant strides in reducing the environmental footprint of the OR through department- and team-level initiatives, according to a March 29 report in Penn Medicine news. Driven by CIRCE: Medicine, a faculty group consisting of providers from Penn Medicine and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, examples…

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By: Matt Danford
April 22, 2024
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Colorado-focused report shows wasteful spending, over $130M spent on low-value care

Editor's Note A new report by the Denver-based nonprofit Center for Improving Value in Health Care found that millions are being spent on tests and treatments that have limited value for patient health and well-being, KFF Health News November 13 reports. According to estimates, from 10% to 30% of the…

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By: Brita Belli
November 13, 2023
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WHO: Dire need to deal with huge volumes of COVID-19 medical waste

Editor's Note Tons of extra medical waste generated in response to COVID-19 has put tremendous strain on healthcare waste management systems, threatening human and environmental health, according to a February 1 World Health Organization (WHO) report. In this global analysis WHO says: A large share of 87,000 tons of personal…

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By: Judy Mathias
February 2, 2022
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Recycling program evolves to sustain gains in waste reduction

Approximately 5.9 million tons of waste annually comes from the healthcare industry, and one-third of that waste comes directly from the OR. Each year, an increasing number of disposable products are used in the OR. To address this dilemma, an OR recycling performance improvement committee was formed at Massachusetts General…

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By: Judith M. Mathias, MA, RN
January 13, 2020
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EPA will require sterilization companies to provide data on EO emissions

Editor's Note Medtech sterilization companies were asked by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to provide data that will help the agency craft new regulation of ethylene oxide emissions, the September 25 Medical Design & Outsourcing reports. The data will include specific sterilization facility characteristics, control devices, work practices, and costs…

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By: Judy Mathias
September 26, 2019
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Environmental considerations for reusable vs disposable isolation gowns

Editor's Note Selecting reusable isolation gowns may result in significant environmental benefits compared with disposable gowns, this study finds. This analysis of 1,000 isolation gowns in a healthcare setting (24 reusable gowns from 8 suppliers, 16 disposable gowns from 5 suppliers) found that the reusable gowns resulted in a: 28%…

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By: Judy Mathias
August 8, 2018
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ASC reaps rewards of recycling and reprocessing

What began as an employee request to reduce waste and create a “greener” workplace has resulted in an international award for TRIA Orthopedic Center, Bloomington, Minnesota. By conserving materials and energy, the ambulatory surgery center (ASC) not only reduced its environmental impact, but also saved money. The initiative started with…

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By: Paula DeJohn
April 21, 2017
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Advance preparation tends to waste many absorbable hemostatic agents

Results of a recent survey suggest that a great deal of unnecessary product waste could be avoided if OR nurses changed their approach to using absorbable hemostatic agents. The survey, administered electronically to 200 US registered nurses in late 2014, found that 62% of respondents prepared absorbable hemostatic agents before…

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By: Elizabeth Wood
March 17, 2016
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Medicare trust fund exhausted by 2030

Editor's Note A report from Medicare trustees on July 22 projects that the Medicare trust fund will be exhausted in 2030. The report also revealed that recipients of Social Security disability benefits could face steep cuts next year. The fund it expected to run out of money in 2016. Congress…

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By: OR Manager
July 22, 2015
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