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North Carolina Baptist Hospital

Year Submitted: 2007

Process: Medical Equipment Maintenance

Industry: Medical Facility

Wastes Reduced: Batteries

Location: Winston-Salem NC

No. of employees: 9000

Contact: Kathryn Charles

Phone: (910) 716-6496


North Carolina Baptist Hospital (NCBH) is an 806-bed, tertiary-care facility serving northwest North Carolina. Along with the Bowman Gray School of Medicine, the Hospital's 9,000 employees care for 23,000 inpatients and 500,000 outpatients each year. Municipal solid waste streams include aluminum and steel cans, office paper, corrugated cardboard, plastics, glass, landscape materials, food wastes, and construction and demolition (C&D) wastes.

P2 Application:

NCBH encourages employees to share ideas on waste reduction, reuse, and recycling through its Viewpoints program and Project Waste Watch, a monthly idea exchange conducted during 1992. The Viewpoints program provides monetary awards to employees for ideas that demonstrate cost containment and waste reduction. The following projects resulted from employee suggestions:

  • A battery exchange program resulted in a 26-percent decrease in battery usage.
  • Foam overlays (egg crate mattresses) were replaced with pressure-reduction mattresses.
  • Disposable jumpsuits for operating room visitors were switched for washable cotton coveralls; associated savings were $1,700.
  • Separate clear, graduated cylinders used to measure urine volume were eliminated with the use of clear male urinals; this change annually prevents 36,000 graduated cylinders from entering the waste stream.
  • Operating room staff collect clean plastic trays from surgical supply packages, pacemaker boxes, and unused blue drape material for reuse in the Childcare Center for play therapy, arts, and crafts.
  • The Dietary Department sells beverage mugs to employees and offers ongoing discounts for employees who use the mugs for refills.
  • Medical Center employees exchange new city telephone directories for old ones. By recycling old telephone books, 11 tons of paper are diverted from the landfill annually.
  • NCBH worked with a mail packaging company to reuse packing peanuts and bubble pack.

The Medical Center is currently involved in a pilot project to recover plastic soft drink and milk containers. As products are delivered to hospital stations, the delivery box is left to collect the empty containers and is picked up with each new delivery. Soda bottles and aluminum cans left on cafeteria trays are collected for recycling.
  • The Materials Management Department collects used laser printing and ribbon cartridges for recycling and reuse. By refilling cartridges instead of buying new ones, the Hospital saves $40 per toner cartridge.
  • The Purchasing Department collects used laser printer and ribbon cartridges for recycling.

  • Comments: Revenue recovered from the sale of office paper, corrugated cardboard, aluminum cans, wood pallets, and scrap metal during 1994 was $34,113 with an additional $16,600 saved in disposal expenses.

Details of Reductions

  • 450.0 - Tons of   Solid Waste
    Comments: In calendar year 1993, the NCBH recycled 450 tons of materials in its office paper, corrugated cardboard, aluminum can, and wood pallet recycling programs. An additional 11 tons of telephone directories were collected for recycling.

Additional Information :

In addition, major recycling programs collect office paper, corrugated cardboard, aluminum cans, and wood pallets. Magazines, newspapers, and styrofoam peanuts are collected in newly established recycling programs. In additional projects, city and campus telephone directories are collected, plastic six-pack rings are recycled, and silver and X-ray film is recovered.

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