Rethinking waste as a valuable by-product is vital to meeting sustainability targets across healthcare systems, writes David Rakowski.

The entire healthcare industry should be thinking about the sustainability of its plastic waste footprint. With the global focus on Net Zero, and the impact that waste has on greenhouse gas emissions, healthcare leaders need to rethink their approach. That includes exploring the increasing commercial opportunities which are making waste a valuable by-product.

The NHS alone generated an estimated 590,000 tonnes of clinical waste every year (pre Covid-19), with 25 percent of the overall waste generated by a hospital being plastic. Much of this is incinerated due to the potential for contamination, producing CO₂ emissions and potentially other noxious fumes.

So, if there’s a huge environmental impact and potentially a commercial transformation opportunity, why isn’t there more happening today and how can the industry unlock the opportunity?

The clock is ticking . . .

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