Implementation module: Moving (Back) to Reusables in the OR


When considering how to reduce the environmental footprint of the operating room, it makes sense to first revisit the old adage of Reduce-Reuse-Recycle. This common sense approach relies on the concept of avoiding use of materials or supplies that are not needed to protect or ensure patient or worker safety (reduce), using a reusable, preprocessed or reposable option where a product must be used, and where no reusable option is available ensure the product is recyclable. The most environmentally unfriendly option is a single-use, disposable product that cannot be recycled at the end of use. When undertaking a comparative analysis, surgical services managers need to consider the lifecycle costs of disposable items beyond first cost.1

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