Evaluating all options for reducing waste, hospitals can opt for reusable sharps containers that decrease carbon footprints. Each reusable container keeps 600 disposable ones out of the landfill. A Carbon Footprint Estimator tool(2) measures the hospital's impact to include annual data on the pounds of plastic and cardboard diverted from landfills. This number equates to specific gallons of gas not burned. Since 1986, more than 111 million disposable containers have been kept out of U.S. landfills by facilities using Stericycle services.
Recycling to reduce waste is one strategy that benefits hospitals by engaging all employees. A Stericycle 2010 healthcare waste stream survey of 400 U.S. hospitals found that the average hospital recycles less than 14% of its total waste - highlighting opportunity for improvement. Currently, PGH's Hospital Partners for Change have an average percentage of recyclables from total waste of 27%(3) (the high is 35%).
Many services used in health care have environmentally preferable alternatives that can eliminate hazardous waste, save energy and water and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Stericycle facilitates evaluation of alternative materials and provides compliance training that may reduce or eliminate environmental impact and assures compliance with complex regulations and Joint Commission standards.
To learn more about Practice Greenhealth's Greening the Supply Chain initiative and the EPP Business Leadership Coalition, visit: http://practicegreenhealth.org/initiatives/greening-supply-chain.About Stericycle Lake Forest, IL-based Stericycle (NASDAQ: SRCL) is a leader in healthcare-related services that protect people and reduce risk. With more than 552,000 customers worldwide, Stericycle has operations in North America, Europe, Latin America and Japan. Visit www.stericycle.com.
(1) The University of Chicago Medical Center, December 2009 (2) http://www.stericycle.com/carbon-footprint-estimator.html (3) www.practicegreenhealth.org/awards/environmental-excellence-awards-benchmark-report Kellee Johnson firstname.lastname@example.org SOURCE Stericycle, Inc.