Eco-efficiency of ventilation and anaesthesia accessories
For a realistic comparison of environmental effects and costs, the analysis covered the entire product life cycle including use on patients in the operating theatre and intensive care units as well as reprocessing of the products. The results of the eco-efficiency comparison can be summarised as follows:
Anaesthesia supply products
The investigated disposable products show a significantly better eco-efficiency than the reusable products; the ecological index and also the costs for the hospital are significantly lower.
The disposable products studied have a significantly worse eco-efficiency than the reusable products; the ecology index and also the costs for the hospital are significantly lower.
The investigated disposable product and the reusable product have an almost equal eco-efficiency; this applies to the ecology index and also to the costs.
In the case of the disposable products, the cause of the environmental impact is mainly the production of the products and, in the case of necessary wipe disinfections during the use phase, the production of disinfection wipes. In the case of reusable products, product manufacture plays a much smaller role due to multiple use until disposal. In addition to the production of disinfectant wipes for wipe disinfections (monitoring accessories), the emissions here result primarily from the provision of electricity for the equipment used to reprocess the products after use. Environmental credits result from the recycling of plastic packaging as well as paper and cardboard. They reduce the environmental impact only slightly. In addition, the product alternatives were compared by means of a qualitative assessment of hygienic risks. All disposable products performed better than the reusable alternatives.
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Dr. Karsten Wambach