Medline and Greenhealth Exchange Partner to Find New Ways to Advance Healthcare Sustainability

August 13, 2019

Medline and Greenhealth Exchange (GX), a group purchasing consortium for health systems, today announced a new partnership that will unite manufacturing and clinical expertise to drive innovation and bring green products to the healthcare marketplace.

The partnership will concentrate on creating environmentally friendly products that eliminate well-known chemicals of concern, such as formaldehyde, flame-retardants, and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) from products providers use daily to care for patients. The collaboration will include insight from purchasing influencers and GX owners across the country, including Confluence Health, Dartmouth-Hitchcock, Dignity Health, Gundersen Health System, Marshfield Clinic Health System, Mayo Clinic, Partners Healthsystem and University of Vermont Health Network.

“Sustainability efforts are becoming a growing focus of healthcare’s overall strategy, and procurement staff are particularly concerned with the materials that make up a product. This partnership offers the opportunity for our GX members, who are the users of the products, and Medline, who has extensive expertise in product development, to join together to accelerate the innovation of products that are healthier for patients and the environment,” says Nancy Anderson, vice president of contracting, Greenhealth Exchange.

Hospitals produce more than 29 pounds of waste per bed per day. That is 5 million-plus tons of waste each year. Additionally, U.S. hospitals account for approximately one-tenth of the country’s carbon dioxide emissions.  In response, many hospitals are making changes to have a more positive environmental impact, including buying products that are safer on the planet and on people.

The product development process will involve the users of the produce more integrally in every step of the process, from defining the need to selecting the materials, and testing the finished product to ensure it meets patients and staff needs

“This partnership will help build consensus around what is considered environmentally friendly so that we are better able to serve health systems by creating products that are designed for their individual needs. As a manufacturer, we will be able to ensure the green component is maintained throughout the entire design process,” says Francesca Olivier, senior director of innovation and corporate responsibility, Medline.

Medline is actively seeking innovative concepts for environmentally friendly, healthcare-related solutions. For more information and to submit an idea, visit https://www.medline.com/pages/innovation/.

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