Recycling and waste bins in hospital recycling resources
For more information & further resources on how to build an exceptional recycling program for your healthcare facility, click here – or tune in to our Healthcare Waste Management webinar on Dec 1st!

Waste management in a healthcare setting can be a very difficult, yet rewarding, task. It’s something that requires regular attention to drive awareness and form important daily habits with your staff & patients.

Standardize your program, add more recycling stations, reduce contamination—these are all the typical phrases you’ll hear in the recycling community about how to improve diversion rates and reduce costs at your facility. These are all successful practices; however, there’s many moving parts to each that makes tackling them successfully a little more difficult—but that’s why they brought you on board!

The team at Busch Systems has put together this list of 9 resources to help you run a efficient & effective recycling & waste management program for your healthcare facility.

(Even better, they’re all free! Okay, yes. Some may ask for you to share your email address to access some of them, but that’s a small price to pay for what you’ll get!)

  1. 5 Ways Hospitals can Launch Effective Recycling Programs for Single-use Products

    Single-use products are a great area to focus on in regards to waste management for a healthcare facility. By the nature of their work, it is no surprise that hospitals produce millions of tons of waste annually, much of which is single-use. This article by Green Biz provides 5 quick strategies for managing single-use waste and using it as an opportunity to giving your healthcare waste management program a significant boost.

  2. Practice Greenhealth Case Studies

    Practice Greenhealth is a respected membership-based organization that provides resources and networking opportunities to help hospitals and other healthcare organizations lower their environmental footprint. Many of their programs and resources are restricted to members, but they have a number of free-to-view case studies highlighting successful examples of general waste reduction and initiatives specific to operating rooms.  Practice Greenhealth has a range of other resources included with membership, including how-to toolkit for reducing waste and a calculator to help factor the true lifetime cost of single use vs. reusable medical supplies and equipment.

  3. Develop and/or enhance the facility’s recycling program [Workbook]

    One of our favorites. This is a workbook of sorts generated by the American Hospital Association and the goal, as the title states, is to develop and/or enhance a comprehensive, fiscally sound recycling program that is incorporated into all departments, enhances regulatory compliance, reduces waste volumes and offsets emissions associated with solid waste disposal. Beautiful!

  4. HPRC – Stanford University Recycling Pilot Study

    This is a great, in-depth report from a 2013 pilot project done by Stanford Hospital & Clinics and Healthcare Plastics Recycling Council. The study focused on each stage of implementing a comprehensive recycling program for single-use items and packaging. The report reviews both the steps to set up the program, but also consider other practices critical to its success such as researching packaging design, conducting waste audits and tracking collection and cost savings metrics. It includes lessons learned and recommendations to other facilities when planning similar programs.

  5. Hospitals save millions with sustainability programs, cut back on waste 

    An excellent article from Healthcare Finance News. It’s always nice to see the financial community realizing the benefits of recycling–makes those conversations with the CFO much easier when you’re outlining your waste management budgets for the following year! A lot of great stuff in this article for beginners to experts.

  6. Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care’s Reducing PPE and Medical Single Use Plastic Waste Project

    The Coalition was launched in 2000 as a collective effort of health care associations and environmental groups with a mission to support the development of green health policies and practices. They recently launched a government-funded initiative is aimed at addressing PPE and single use plastic waste in healthcare through the use of circular economy principles. The project will research and engage the healthcare sector on strategies to more effectively recycle and reduce the need for single use plastics. In the near term, you can view several webinar recordings they done on the subject and engage with others through a newly formed Google Group.

  7. Healthcare Plastics Recycling: Making It Happen at Your Hospital [Guide]

    This is an awesome resource for healthcare facility managers tasked with implementing a strong waste management program. As the authoring organization is called Healthcare Plastics Recycling Council, obviously this guide is focused on recycling…you guessed it…Tires! Alright seriously, plastics. As previously mentioned, single-use plastics are a major area for opportunity in healthcare recycling & waste management. This guide provides some simple, yet very useful tools for recycling large quantities of single-use plastic products.

  8. Are disposable hospital supplies trashing the environment?

    This article authored by Wendy Glauser, Jeremy Petch & Sachin Pendharkar and hosted on Healthy Debate provides some interesting perspective for discussion regarding disposable waste at healthcare facilities. Sensing a theme?!

  9. Waste not: Developing a hospital recycling program

    This article by Bill Turpin, director of strategic business for WM Healthcare Solutions & Dr. Linda D. Lee, director of WM Healthcare Solutions outlines the simple necessary steps a healthcare facility can take to improving their recycling & waste collection program.

And there you have it! Plenty of resources to get your journey to sustainable healthcare waste management started. We’ll continue to update this page as we see more great information come down the pipe. And again, if you think we’ve missed some more resources, feel free to comment below.

Stay tuned!

For more information on how to build an exceptional recycling program for your healthcare facility, click here.