Calling all Operating Theatre Nurses, Doctors and Practioners.

Harriet Dean-Orange's picture

Hello all.

I am taking on a project which is mainly based around the most important aspects of what makes Operating Theatre practice more sustainable. For me, personally, it would be the waste management aspect of what we do and how we correctly segregate waste etc.

Please comment below with what parts of your practice you consider sustainable and why you think it is the most important. For example, lowering anaesthetic gases or minimising equipment used or not using water for hand preparation.

I would love to hear your achievements and thoughts!! Formal or informal comments welcome. Many thanks in advance.

Harriet Dean-Orange

Senior Theatres Staff Nurse. RCN Perioperative Forum Committee Member. SRSHN Ambassador.



Gerard Sheehan's picture
Hi Harriet, great post. Waste segregation should be easy. I have seen it done properly in a Ramsay hospital, but not in the NHS. I have posted before about scrub taps, and I would love to see that happen. What does happen, up and down the country, is the re-use of items such as packaging into other kinds of utility. That always demonstrates, to me, that theatre staff will embrace sustainability, if only their managers weren't obsessed with finance. Let's see some answers.

Thanks for you reply Gerard!

Harriet Dean-Orange's picture

Thanks for your reply Gerard!

We have been told by infection control that auto-taps aren't a possibility in Theatres. Do you have an supporting evidence that might support my attempt to get them into my department? Of course the usual finance arguements are still a barrier, but with the right support I think I could work on this.

Waste segregation seems to be something that is easily done, but yet there are so many issues with it! I won't go into them on here, but main issue is educating staff takes a lot of time and effort. Two things I find difficult when trying to run operating lists.

Has your area of practice been successful with any other sustainable practices?

We've done a few things like removing polystyrene cups and plastic cutlery. Stream lining sets to minimise what is processed by SSD. Also, changing big plastic anatomical waste boxes to biodegradable ones......still the mission continues!

Thanks again for your feedback :-)


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