Growing body of research shows using reprocessed medical devices can cut ozone depletion by 90%
New study of reprocessed Electrophysiology Catheters indicates reprocessed devices can cut global warming impact of medical devices by 50%
By Medline Newsroom Staff | April 22, 2021
A recent study conducted by the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety, and Energy Technology (Fraunhofer) analyzed the environmental impacts of the medical remanufacturing of Electrophysiology Catheters. By using reprocessed catheters as an alternative to newly manufactured ones, the study revealed they reduced global warming impact by 50% and ozone depletion by 90%. The use of abiotic resources like water, sunlight and minerals, also decreased by 29%.
“The study recently conducted by the Fraunhofer Institute shows the global warming impact of “single-use” medical devices is cut in half when reprocessed devices are used instead,” says Daniel J. Vukelich, Esq., CAE, president of the Association of Medical Device Reprocessors. “What we’ve learned through this study of Electrophysiology Catheters is the road map hospitals and the healthcare industry at large is looking for to quickly and effectively reduce its environmental footprint.”
In 2019, AMDR data showed that hospitals and surgical centers saved about $545 million using reprocessed medical devices, a 15% increase over 2018 data. While the industry reaped significant savings in 2019, data also indicates nearly 15.3 million pounds of waste diverted from landfills, saving facilities an additional $22 million in waste disposal fees.
“As hospitals find new ways to make their supply chain even more resilient as a result of challenges stemming from the pandemic, we are seeing increased interest in medical device reprocessing to help keep these devices in circulation,” says Brandon Forrest, regional director for Medline ReNewal. “This not only increases the efficiency of hospital supply chains in terms of managing supplies and costs, but also enables them to meet their environmental goals.”
A recent article in OR Manager highlighted how the Mayo Clinic and nearly 100 other Vizient health systems across the nation built more resilient supply chains while reducing their environmental impact. The story goes on to share how the Captis organization’s reprocessing program has grown significantly from 2015-2019 with estimated savings growing over 1,600% and pounds of waste diverted up 687%.
“The growth of the Captis program is an incredible success story for medical reprocessing in healthcare. As more organizations begin to see the deep value, benefit and impact, programs like Medline ReNewal, which has already collected over 5 million devices and returned over 50% into service, will become even more strategic to an organization’s outcomes,” Forrest continued.
Learn how to generate engagement and involvement in reprocessing single-use medical devices.