Infection Control Today

November 13, 2012

The Association of Medical Device Reprocessors (AMDR) celebrates a significant milestone today, marking 15 years of helping hospitals cut wasteful spending. Its members saved U.S. hospitals $300 million in 2011 alone. The third-party reprocessing association, which has helped grow reprocessing from a $20 million industry in 2000 to a $400 million industry today, calls for increased adoption and market growth over the next five years.

“As governments grapple with how to reduce healthcare costs while maintaining quality of care delivery, the industry has a responsibility to bring forth solutions,” says Dan Vukelich, president of AMDR. “Reprocessing offers a smart way for hospitals to save up to 50 percent on medical device supply costs with no up-front investment. We’re proud of the work our industry has done over the past 15 years, but there’s more that can be done in terms of expanding adoption and, in-turn, increasing the cost-savings to the system. We estimate that if just 2 percent of devices marked as single-use could be reprocessed, the healthcare industry would save $2 billion each year.”

On top of the significant financial benefit, hospitals can also divert a substantial amount of waste from landfills by implementing a reprocessing program. American hospitals generate over 4 billion pounds of waste annually, making the health industry the second-largest contributor to U.S. landfills. AMDR members helped hospitals divert over 9 million pounds of medical waste from landfills or incinerators in 2011.

The medical device reprocessing industry currently serves most U.S. hospitals, including 16 of the country’s 17 Honor Roll hospitals as ranked by U.S. News & World Report and nine of the top 10 heart hospitals.  One of the most telling signs of growth is that the independent companies that originally formed AMDR are now wholly-owned subsidiaries of two respected giants in the medical device industry: Stryker Sustainability Solutions, a division of Stryker Corporation and Sterilmed, Inc., an affiliate of Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc. (part of the Johnson & Johnson family of companies)…

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