As the foremost among five independent specialist orthopaedic hospitals nationwide, the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust conducts a significant volume of intricate tertiary procedures.
These encompass a broad spectrum of treatments, including acute spinal injuries, bone tumours, complex joint reconstruction, orthopaedic medicine, and specialised rehabilitation for individuals experiencing chronic back pain.
In April, the Trust faced the challenge of their Dangerous Goods Advisor and Waste Consultant deciding to discontinue his services.
This came at a bad time as the Trust was working towards reducing its clinical waste volumes in line with the 20-20-60 waste split target and also wanted to further reduce single-use plastics throughout the new theatre block.
There was also a secondary challenge of the Trust’s Facilities Management provider being hesitant about the prospect of change but experiencing difficulties with staff training and retention.
Upon discontinuing his services, the Dangerous Goods Advisor and Waste Consultant had recommended one of Sharpsmart’s Waste Consultants to the Trust to pick up where he left off.
Already being an existing customer of our reusable sharps containment system, the Trust reached out to Adrian Giles and arranged for him to visit their site on a bi-weekly basis to improve their waste management processes and support them in reaching their targets.
Adrian and the team completed a pre-acceptance audit, reviewed the site’s waste policy and provided a gap analysis.
The auditing identified training needs across several departments throughout the facility as well as significant opportunities to reduce clinical waste volumes and single-use plastics.
The final step before beginning to introduce solutions to the Trust was engaging their Facilities Management provider and helping them see the value of an adjusted waste management process and how it would improve their practices.
We supported the Trust with implementing our Clinismart reusables into their new theatre block (consisting of four new operating theatres) and introducing them into their separate outpatients department in Central London to aid waste segregation.
We also began implementing the changes outlined following the audit which included tidying up and reorganising the waste compound and introducing the offensive waste stream into all operating theatres.
Alongside the waste management consultancy, staff training and educational material was rolled out and at the beginning of October, Sharpsmart took on the clinical waste service for the Trust.
The results of Sharpsmart’s waste consultancy and guidance on waste segregation and bin placement, and support of the Facilities Management provider with domestic and portering training resulted in the following:
- Increased staff labour efficiencies throughout the Trust.
- Improved use of Sharpsmart’s portable reusable sharps containers.
- Offensive waste output increased from 35% to 77% – exceeding the 20-20-60 waste split outlined in the NHS Clinical Waste Strategy.
The Trust has managed to save a significant amount of money and benefit from an improved carbon footprint by increasing labour efficiencies and reducing clinical waste volumes.
With clinical staff and domestic and portering teams trained and working to an improved standard, Adrian has reduced his bi-weekly site visit to a monthly visit to continue supporting the Trust’s priorities and targets.