Optimizing Anesthesia-Related Waste Disposal in the Operating Room: A Brief Report

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Abstract

Misappropriation of noncontaminated waste into regulated medical waste (RMW) containers is a source of added expense to health care facilities. The operating room is a significant contributor to RMW waste production. This study sought to determine whether disposing of anesthesia-related waste in standard waste receptacles before patient entry into the operating room would produce a reduction in RMW. A median of 0.35 kg of waste was collected from 51 cases sampled, with a potential annual reduction of 13,800 kg of RMW to the host institution, and a cost savings of $2200.

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