Cytotoxics reconstitution units in the ecological era: Assessment of dematerialization on carbon footprint

4 October 2023

M. Rigoni, E. Coget, C. Carbasse, A. Roche, M. Ducassou, P. Brouard, C. Cousin
Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Nîmes, France

Digital technology has made paperless printing possible, and greatly reduced the carbon footprint. To produce a ream of 500 sheets, 7 kg of wood, 130 L of water and 3.5 kg of CO2 are needed. In this context, it seemed essential to us to reduce our use of paper for the preparation of chemotherapy and to begin a wider reflection on our carbon impact by raising awareness throughout the team.

Evaluation of weekly paper consumption in our unit before and after dematerialization of production forms (PF) and administration plans (AP). Amultiple-choice survey to measure satisfaction and raise team awareness was made.

Dematerialization of PFs has reduced paper consumption by 3 kg per week, without slowing down production. Six pharmacists and six pharmacy technicians answered the survey, 8 of them were satisfied with the paperless system. We currently estimate a reduction of 1kg of paper per week, representing the equivalent of 21 reams of paper, equivalent to 73.5kg of Co2 and 2800 liters of water saved per week. Concerning knowledge of the resources needed to manufacture paper, 55% of the team answered correctly for water consumption and 72% for C02 emissions per ream of paper produced. The whole team is aware of the carbon footprint and is ready to continue with other ecological actions.

Based on these results and our motivation, we are going to pursue this approach by setting up a digital application designed to replace the nurses’ APs, reducing our paper consumption once again. The unit is also working on waste management. These actions are part of a more global plan at university hospital, with the creation of a commission for ecological transition in healthcare. This commission has been approved by the Medical Establishments Commission and the direction, with the aim of establishing transverse working groups such as energy, transport, environmental gestures, etc., and others specific to the activities of different departments.

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