Medical device industry must take action on environmental sustainability: GlobalData

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GlobalDataa data and analytics company, said Wednesday that the medical device industry needs to do enough to be more environmentally sustainable.

As climate change is a persistent and significant problem globally, many countries and companies are trying their best to implement policies that will combat the rapid warming of the earth, but some industries are lagging behind. others, the company says.

It would appear that the medical device industry has been slow to change its sustainability practices, largely due to strict regulations.

“Risk and quality management standards are often uncompromising due to the nature of the products, as changes cannot come at the expense of the health of the population. This is reflected in the recent GlobalData survey, in which 58% of respondents said the medical device industry was not doing enough to be more environmentally sustainable,” the company said in a statement Wednesday. .

“While the medical device industry faces stringent regulations, especially compared to other industries, medical device companies and the healthcare industry as a whole must always be environmentally conscious in whenever possible,” Alexandra Murdoch, medical analyst at GlobalData, said in a statement.

According to the data and analytics firm, medical device companies could improve their environmental sustainability practices in many ways, starting with reducing waste.

In addition, healthcare facilities generate a lot of waste from disposable devices, such as sharp objects, traces of chemotherapy and pathological waste. The use of single-use products has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, as it has dramatically increased the use of products like masks and gloves, he said.

“Hospitals also have the highest energy intensity of any publicly funded building, so if they were to switch to renewable energy, they could have a significant impact. Additionally, the use of digital health could help companies achieve their sustainability goals. Digital health tools enable healthcare professionals to continue to deliver healthcare to patients, maximizing value while minimizing resources. The use of digital health tools such as telehealth also makes it possible to avoid healthcare-related travel, thus limiting CO2 emissions. Similarly, cloud services can contribute to good sustainability practices by saving materials needed for on-premises hardware, which can also help reduce CO2 emissions,” Murdoch said.

According to GlobalData, the consensus is that the medical device industry is not doing enough to be more environmentally sustainable, with some companies implementing different measures to try to reduce their CO2 emissions.

Recently, Philips created an EcoDesign program and plans to improve the energy efficiency of its products, use fewer resources and more recycled content, avoid the use of hazardous substances, design for circularity and make its packaging easy to recycle and reuse.

“If more companies in the medical device industry can develop programs similar to the EcoDesign program, CO2 emissions from medical devices could potentially be reduced. Environmental sustainability is becoming more important every day, and medical device companies must act quickly to reduce waste and CO2 emissions,” added.

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