07/23/2012

Green Operating Room Waste Management

 

Operating rooms can produce over 30% of a hospital’s waste. Use these tips to divert refuse from the landfill.

Have you thought about greening your operating rooms? An analysis published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal shows that improving waste management in ORs can result in cost savings and reduced environmental impact without compromising patient care.

Operating rooms produce approximately 20-33% of all waste in hospitals. In 2008, Canadian hospital activities were the second most energy-intensive activity, consuming the energy of 440,000 homes.

Figures from 2007 indicate that U.S. healthcare facilities contributed 8% of total greenhouse gas emissions and disposed of over 4 billion pounds of waste, making the sector the second-largest producer of landfill waste after the food industry.

To green your operating room, consider these strategies:

  • Create separate streams for regular trash and medical waste, as the latter requires high-energy processing, and train staff to differentiate. An estimated 50-80% of normal waste is incorrectly disposed as hazardous waste.
  • Invest in closed collection systems to discharge liquid waste into sanitary sewers, which reduces the amount of waste needing treatment.
  • Use smart monitors to reduce energy use when operating rooms are vacant.
  • Partner with medical equipment companies to promote greener packaging, as plastic packaging is a major source of needless waste.
  • Donate unused equipment to developing countries.
  • Explore alternative disposal methods to incineration, which is responsible for significant emissions of dioxin and furan in Canada.

“Operating rooms pose a particular challenge to waste management because of the need for absolute sterility,” write the authors.

“Fortunately, technologies and waste-reduction strategies have emerged that satisfy the triple bottom line of people, planet, and profits.”

 

 


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Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


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Visit our website today to learn about the design flexibility of a Morton building and the endless possibilities of partnering with our designBUILD team.


Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


When choosing a metal-clad building for your next construction project, consider Morton Buildings, Inc., and their designBUILD team, we’ll make your dream a reality.

We Can Help You Reduce Energy by 30%

Our mission is to help our customers manage their buildings' energy costs, improve reliability, and enhance performance while having a positive impact on the environment.
CLICK HERE to find out how.

Add highly responsive multi-zone comfort to any building project, in any climate. Our CITY MULTI H2i R2- and Y-Series VRF systems give you flexibility to fit the needs of any building. Enjoy 100% heating capacity at 0°F outdoor ambient, and 85% heating capacity at -13°F outdoor ambient.  For more information, log on to www.mitsubishipro.com

 
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