A year ago the Trust started its journey towards sustainable waste management by introducing recycling bins in the main public areas of the hospital and other Trust buildings, thanks to a donation from the Friends of St Mary’s Hospital. Since then the hospital has caught the recycling bug, as facilities for the segregation of paper, plastic bottles, cans and glass have now been introduced in most clinical areas. Infection Control being an absolute priority in a hospital setting, the bins selected for wards and patient areas have pedal operated lids and an anti-bacterial coated body.
The Trust also hosted an office recycling launch event at the beginning of September. Trust staff were provided with information on the new bins being introduced in all office areas. This marked a major milestone in the Trust’s ambitious programme to roll-out recycling facilities throughout the Trust estate – be it on the front line or back office.
Charles Joly, Environmental, Waste & Sustainability Manager for the Trust says:
“Feedback from staff has been fantastic, and relayed pride in being part of an organisation that puts sustainability at the centre of its operations. By recycling, we do our bit for the planet and local environment. Recycling allows for valuable raw resources to be recovered and re-processed. For instance recycling one tin can saves enough energy to power a television for 3 hours. The cost of recycling is also significantly cheaper to the Trust than ‘black bag’ waste, which is an additional incentive.”
The Trust worked closely on the improvement of its waste management practices and improving its recycling performance with local supplier Biffa waste services, based in Newport. Over the last year the Trust has increased its domestic waste recycling from 18% to 27%. With the addition of office recycling, the Trust is set to go over the 50% recycling mark very soon.
Katie Gray, Executive Director of Transformation and Integration, said:
“We are proud of the sustainability and carbon benefits of our recycling scheme, and of course the significant cost savings mean we can concentrate our limited financial resources on front line services and patient care.”
The initiative is part of the wider commitment of the Trust for high quality healthcare services delivered in an environmentally sustainable manner. Later this year the Trust is due to publish its first Sustainable Development Management Plan, setting out its ambitions for reducing its environmental impacts and embedding sustainability principles in the organisation.
Photographed: Wendy Fawdry, Cleanliness Assistant on the Medical Assessment Unit at St. Mary’s Hospital