If green is the new black, why are some seeing red?
In the HPN October 2023 Edition, healthcare leaders in the sustainability sphere were posed with the question, “What is the value proposition for recycling and sustainability?”
Traditionally, legacy sustainability programs had no value proposition. Rather, they were a financial burden to hospitals because the recycling programs in place utilized used parts that were broken down into components and inserted into ill-equipped recycled parts manufacturing. Today, emerging circular programs combine environmental sustainability with financial benefits. Tomorrow, circular solutions are expected to both reduce costs and environmental impact.
Rob Chase, CEO and Founder of NewGen Surgical pinpoints trays as a key option. “Start transitioning your plastic procedure kit packaging trays to renewable plant-based trays
currently on the market,” he said. “Transition off plastic in the area that is easiest first, packaging, and then move to renewable plant-based OR consumable products where
To move the healthcare market toward low-carbon patient care, NewGen Surgical’s Chase posits a carrot-and-stick approach that is applied to providers and suppliers alike.
“For suppliers, it is quite possible that manufacturers of single-use plastic products could be held responsible for the end-of-life impacts to the commons and society at large – the stick – or more likely and a more effective way to move the market would be for a change in reimbursement – the carrot – to providers, paying more for measuring and achieving lower carbon surgical procedures [and] patient care. This would really drive change and get manufacturers working on low-carbon product solutions. Absent some regulatory lever being put in place, providers and suppliers should act now because we all have families and we need
to do the right thing, where we have expertise and can make a difference for future generations.”
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Oct. 27, 2023