Plastics offer very good properties, are often durable materials and are used in all possible areas – from packaging to the construction industry to medicine. If plastic products are circulated for as long as possible, the consumption of resources is reduced and the climate is protected. Many medical products that have only been approved by the manufacturer for one-time use also contain plastics, for example electrophysiology catheters (cardiac catheters). A research team from the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety and Energy Technology UMSICHT on behalf of the medical remanufacturing company Vanguard AG investigated the positive environmental impacts if these are not disposed of but restored using certified processes. .
A circular economy should make it possible to extract fewer fossil resources, minimize waste products and emissions, design products intelligently for their recycling and thus reduce end-of-life losses. In order to show the environmental impacts of the manufacture of products and materials, Fraunhofer UMSICHT creates life cycle assessments or life cycle assessments for customers from different industries. In the recently published study On behalf of Vanguard AG, the research team compared the new production of an electrophysiology catheter (cardiac catheter) with a restored catheter – using so-called medical remanufacturing – in particular with regard to their impact on global warming and their consumption of resources. The result: Medical remanufacturing reduces the CO 2 footprint by over 50 percent and resource consumption by over 28 percent. The study was published in the scientific journal »Sustainability«. . .

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English translation courtesy of AMDR.