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{Past Event} - Greening the OR: Introduction to the Greening the OR Initiative

November 17, 2011 - 2:00 pm - November 17, 2011 - 3:00 pm -- Eastern Standard Time


The operating room (OR) is the epicenter of today’s hospital with a recent study by the McKesson Group estimating that the OR generates 42% of the hospital’s revenue. A primary source of hospital admissions, the OR also drives significant costs related to equipment, supplies and personnel — the OR is the leader in medical supply usage for the entire hospital. A recent study estimated supply costs at 56% of the total budget of the operating room — dwarfing salary costs at 35%. The OR also generates huge volumes of waste. The OR produces between 20 to 30% of a hospital’s total waste volume, despite the OR’s diminutive spatial footprint. With competing priorities, it makes sense to focus on those departments with the highest costs, greatest inefficiencies and/or largest volumes of waste. Thus the OR is a key target for greening efforts in many facilities. Practice Greenhealth has launched the Greening the OR Initiative in an effort to coalesce the body of knowledge around sustainable practices in the OR, substantiate these practices with data and case studies, and develop guidance for implementation that can be shared across the sector. This webinar will introduce hospitals to the different components of the Initiative and describe how they can participate.


  • Review the business case for implementing green programs in an OR setting, and frame the overarching benefits of green programs in the OR from a cost, safety, engagement and environmental perspective.
  • Describe the environmental footprint of the OR and illustrate the linkages between the environment and human health.
  • Demonstrate the integration of green programs in an OR setting, and identify key stakeholders who play a role in the implementation and development of environmentally friendly programs
  • Delineate the staff education, engagement and implementation plan  — including barriers — by highlighting case study data demonstrating the benefits of green programs in an OR setting.
  • Describe the OR assessment process as a mechanism to determine green initiatives in participants’ facilities.
  • Guide participants to resources such as the Guidance Documents, Checklist, and Practice Greenhealth website as a means to identify current successes and opportunities.


Kaeleigh Sheehan
Kaeleigh is a Project Manager for Practice Greenhealth. She works largely on managing the Greening the OR Initiative, overseeing the education, training, communications, public relations, tools, resources and engagements relative to Greening the OR efforts. Kaeleigh works with members to assist, enhance and establish sustainable best practices within the OR suite. She also oversees the Council for Environmentally Responsible Surgery, and other projects as needed.

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