PVC recycling scheme

lydia Howells's picture

I am a Deputy Charge Nurse of a Recovery Unit in Scotland
I am about 2 months into a Q.I project of reducing our clinical waste by maximising correct waste segregation procedures.
I am also in contact with the MDT in regards with doing a pilot study in Main Recovery to use a PVC recycling company (RECOMED, in partnership with AXION) to create a circular economy for anaesthetic masks/ o2 masks/saline bags and nasal canula AKA the majority of our clinical waste!  This is still in talking stages & I have many big hoops to jump through to get this project underway, procurement being one of the biggest ones.

Any insight into previous similar studies and how to get around big national contracts so I can commence this pilot study &  test/evidence  benefits/drawbacks to PVC recycling? anybody worked alongside AXION/RECOMED before?

Any input would be great as its starting to feel like an unachievable conquest but I am determinded to keep pushing for change!



PVC-free blood bags

Jacqueline Cutting's picture

Hi Lydia

On a related note - I'm not sure of the current status of this project but Lena Stigh has previously investigated PVC-free blood bags:  http://ec.europa.eu/environment/life/project/Projects/index.cfm?fuseaction=search.dspPage&n_proj_id=3923

Best wishes




PVC reycling in NZ

Matthew Jenks's picture


Please see this link, PVC recyling is widespread in New Zealand hospitals and in Victorian state of Australia. If you email me on matthew.jenks6@gmail.com i can send you the case study of how we set up at our hospital (cant seem to attach anything in comments). Main issue is having a recylcer, and logistics (someone to pick up the product). In Australia and NZ this has been coordinated by Baxter which is great. The other main issue has been monitoring for contamination....an ongoing process!. Matt Jenks


A great link!

Charlotte Holbrook's picture

Hi Matt, thanks so much for adding the link to PVC recycling in AUS and NZ - what a great site!  http://recyclinginhospitals.com.au/

It would be great if you could add your case study to the site as I'm sure it would be a valuable resource. You should be able to upload it by picking 'create a resource' - assuming you don't mind sharing it with us all of course! If you have any trouble, do let me know and I'll find a way to share it on the site. Charlotte 


PVC recycling

Charlotte Holbrook's picture

Hi Lydia, thanks for getting in contact with the network. I know that the North Bristol NHS Trust have an Environmentally Sustainable Theatres working group and that one of their projects includes a PVC recycling scheme. I am not sure what stage they are at with this, but will get in touch with my contact there and see if she can share some information or provide some contacts for you. 

It would also be great to hear how you get on with your QI project into waste segregation as we would love to have some more case studies up on the site!



PVC recycling

Cathy Lawson's picture

Hi Lydia, 

Great to hear that your department in keen to look into this.  I 've been trying to adopt this regionally across anaesthetic departments in the North East of England for a little while now and am happy to share all of the resources that I have with you if that would be helpful?  We're engaged with RecoMed at my current hospital and it was with their speciality plastics recycling takeback scheme that our regional work centred around.  Do drop me a private message if you'd like access to our resources.

Kindest regards, 



PVC recycling

Jonny Groome's picture

Hi Lydia,

I head up a group called GASP - Greener Anaesthesia & Sustainability Project. We are a group focused on reducing the environmental impact of healthcare. We currently have RecoMed Projects at multiple sites. We would be more than happy to help you out if you need any help. Check out our website: gaspanaesthesia.com where you will find information about our projects.

Just as a heads up they are no longer taking IV fluid bags just masks and tubing.

Let me know if I can help


Anaesthetic Registrar & Co-Founder GASP


Register or log in to join our networks!