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Healthcare must move toward a circular economy, and single-use device reprocessing offers a template to follow

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2021 will be the year when a circular healthcare economy will become a vital conversation in the United States. The pandemic has led to a focus on the need to re-use some medical devices and underscored the need for hospitals to critically review their supply chain. During his very first days in office, President Biden placed the healthcare supply chain on the top of his agenda. Meanwhile, US hospitals seeing monthly losses of more than $50 billion (due to massive slow-down of revenue-generating non-emergency procedures and steep declines in patient volume) understand that financial sustainability comes with fundamental changes to the way they buy and use medical equipment, pharmaceuticals, and other supplies.

At the same time, the new administration has indicated it will have a strong focus on environmental sustainability: The United States is quite clearly lagging behind most other First-World countries when it comes to systemic reform to reduce unnecessary waste and greenhouse gas emissions, and this, likewise, is high on the administration’s agenda.

A circular healthcare economy
There are few clear pathways to supply chain solutions that simultaneously reduce costs and environmental impact. The term “circular economy” has been used to describe such solutions that defy the traditional […]

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