Industry News

news | 04.07.23

Healthcare Business Today: A More Sustainable Future in Healthcare

Innovative suppliers are leading the way with reusable and biodegradable alternatives

The importance and prioritization of sustainability in today’s healthcare industry cannot be overstated. The healthcare sector accounts for 8.5% of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S.,producing over 5.9 million tons of healthcare-related waste yearly. Fortunately, the healthcare sector has started taking the initial steps to reduce emissions moving forward.

Earlier this year, the White House-Health Sector Climate Pledge lifted its commitment deadline to allow even more organizations to join the cause. Signing organizations agree to cut their greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2030 and achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

Healthcare Climate Pledge

To fulfill these commitments, the healthcare industry has had to adjust its practices – ranging from greener cleaning protocols to LEED certification for new building construction. Green innovation is required not only from hospitals and healthcare facilities but also from medical suppliers.

Of the annual 5.9 million tons of medical-related waste in the U.S., 85% is general, non-hazardous waste, which includes pillows, wedges, and other positioning products. Because traditional positioning products are only suitable for single-patient use, hospitals must replace these products frequently and in large quantities – resulting in greater carbon emissions and waste production. To put this into context, at least 15 reusable pillows are used per hospital bed each year, resulting in the disposal of almost 14 million pillows in the U.S. alone. This number increases exponentially when you consider the number of hospitals using disposable pillows within their facilities.

Spry Therapeutics, a manufacturer and supplier of positioning products, is answering the call with a clean, green, and multi-patient alternative to traditional positioning devices. Their filtered positioning pillow blocks pathogen ingress in an effort to reduce hospital acquired infection, and can be safely sanitized between patients. Spry’s patented filter technology enables healthcare facilities to reduce their carbon footprint – and associated expenses – without compromising patient outcomes.

To read the full Healthcare Business Today article, click here.