California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) 

Health Care Industry Waste Reduction and Recycling

Resources

 

Awards

Definitions/Glossary

Material Exchange or Donation Programs

  • Home CARES Equipment Recyclers. This nonprofit organization collections durable and reusable health care items and equipment for the Oakland, Marin, Sonoma, and San Francisco area. Additional medical surplus companies can be found listed on to the Alameda County website.
  • iReuse. A search function of available and wanted items in greater Bay Area region.
  • MedShare. This nonprofit organization bridges the gap between surplus items and equipment from the health care industry and those in need, in California, nationally, and internationally.

Fact Sheets

  • Health Care Industry Waste Reduction and Recycling. CalRecycle’s fact sheet to help health care industries in reducing, reusing, recycling or disposing of waste materials properly.
  • Hospital Blue Wrap. CalRecycle’s factsheet for hospitals that want to implement a waste reduction and recycling program for blue wrap. The information includes a definition of blue wrap, how to reduce the disposal of blue wrap, alternatives to blue wrap, and how to start a blue wrap collection and recycling program.
  • Reusable Totes, Blue Wrap Recycling and Composting. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) Region 9’s factsheet on how hospitals often use reusable totes, recycle their blue wrap, and use worms to compost the organic material generated at their facility in order to reduce waste.
  • AB 1826, the Mandatory Commercial Organics Recycling law, will require businesses to recycle their organic waste on or after April 1, 2016, depending on the amount of waste they generate per week.
  • Top 11 WRAP Questions and Answers, Waste Reduction Awards Program (WRAP). Frequently asked questions regarding CalRecycle’s WRAP program. WRAP awards acknowledge private and nonprofit businesses and entities for their waste reduction and recycling efforts.

Funding

  • Reuse Assistance Grant Program. CalRecycle’s reuse assistance grant program provides funding for local public agencies to promote the reuse of nonhazardous material(s) in California.

Environmental Committee or Team

An environmental committee or team can play a critical role in developing an environmental mission, reachable goals, and a plan of action for reaching those goals at their hospital facility. Here are some ideas that an environmental committee could implement as part of their efforts:

  • Sell reusable mugs with no-spill lids and then offer discounts to those using their own beverage mug.
  • Fundraisers through food sales, craft sales, fun runs, etc.
  • “Green” challenges for staff.
  • Encourage staff to share ideas on how to minimize waste.
  • Green Meetings. Learn how to minimize waste at meetings, parties, and other gatherings.
  • Set up a free “trading post” or reuse area where employees can set out used, yet still useful, items such as binders, folders, mouse pads, paper clips, cassette tapes, plastic containers, etc.

Literature

Newsletters

  • infoCycling. The Fall/Winter 2007 issue of CalRecycle's former newsletter highlights Green Purchasing (page 12) and Blue Wrap (page 21).

Other Resources

  • Business Waste Reduction Resources. CalRecycle information on learning ways to reduce your business’ bottom line through waste reduction and procurement efforts.
  • The Facility Information Toolbox (FacIT). FacIT is a facility inventory of California's solid waste handling, recycling, and market infrastructure. The facility inventory includes primary processors (transfer stations, materials recovery facilities, compost facilities, etc.) and secondary processors (recycled feedstock producers, recycled product manufacturers, etc.), emerging technology facilities, disposal facilities, and some primary collection facilities.
  • Buy Recycled. Learn about the CalRecycle's “buy recycled” programs that promote the State’s policy for buying recycled-content products and how to support this endeavor.
  • Reuse Links and Resources. This list of links and resources is just a sample of reuse opportunities available both in California and nationally.
  • California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC). The DTSC’s mission is to protect human health and the environment from toxic harm. Check out their site for reports, case studies, factsheets, and other resources concerning the management of toxic chemicals and hazardous wastes, including electronics.
  • Green Building, Construction, and Demolition.
  • Hospital Pollution Prevention Program. The California Department of Public Health’s (CDPH) site provides information regarding mercury assessment, strategies to preventing pollution, greening your red bag waste, and a self-assessment manual for proper management of medical waste.
  • Plastics Information and Resources. This CalRecycle page targets the world of plastics, including relevant laws, requirements, a list of recyclers, and ways to reduce plastic waste.
  • Plastic Recyclers/Reprocessors Directory. A CalRecycle searchable directory of plastic recyclers and reprocessors that collect specific types of plastics for reuse and recycling in California and nationwide.
  • Pollution Prevention. The U.S. EPA Region 9’s pollution prevention ideas and information for hospitals.
  • Practice Greenhealth (merged with H2E). Practice Greenhealth is a membership organization dedicated to health-care facilities that are committed to being green. This site includes articles, resources, helpful tools, and awards.
  • Waste Prevention Information Exchange. A CalRecycle directory of information specific to waste prevention.
  • Health Care Industry Waste Reduction and Recycling. CalRecycle’s host of links for various materials and programs related to health care industry waste.
  • Waste Prevention World. CalRecycle tips and tools for waste prevention at home and at the office.
  • Waste Reduction and Recycling Posters and Stickers. Select from a list of posters and stickers on this CalRecycle business waste reduction page.
  • World Health Organization (WHO) and Health Care Waste Management. WHO is the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations system through global health issues, setting norms and standards, shaping health research, and providing technical support to countries.

Note: Any resources or content contained on this site that was not published by the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery is not intended to be an endorsement of a particular company or process by the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery.

Health Care Industry Waste Home

Last updated: February 16, 2016
Health Care Waste Reduction and Recycling http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/HealthCare/
Contact: HealthCareWRR@calrecycle.ca.gov (916) 341-6199