Reduce and Reuse

a sustainable solution for commonly used textiles in healthcare

In recent years, healthcare facilities have increasingly used disposable textiles, such as OR caps, isolation aprons and adult bibs or bavettes. To reduce the waste production of healthcare facilities, "Reduce and Reuse: a sustainable solution for commonly used textiles in healthcare" introduces reusable alternatives. 
The use of disposable medical materials has increased dramatically in recent years. Isolation aprons, for example, are thrown away after each use. As are OR caps, which disappear into the trash every time they leave the operating room. This is why the project 'Reduce and Reuse: a sustainable solution for frequently used textiles in healthcare' is investigating the feasibility and costs of a new system where healthcare institutions use reusable linen.
Within UZ Gent, the offer consists of reusable OR caps in the operating theater, isolation aprons on nursing wards and bibs/bavettes on the geriatric wards. Everything will be arranged through a rental system in cooperation with an external laundry. In addition, a residential care center will also purchase the reusable bibs or bavettes and wash them internally. Implementing the use of reusable textiles logistically and safely in healthcare facilities will reduce the consumption of raw materials and the production of medical waste. Because the cost of importing reusable textiles can be hurdle, the project identifies the total cost of the method and then compares it with the current way of working.