How Green Are We Thinking?
AMH’s recycling program, though comprehensive and robust in nature, is still working to make noteworthy gains, especially when it comes to basics such as aluminum cans, plastic bottles and paper. The proper steps have been implemented and a lot has been accomplished in the past couple of years – going from an organization with little-to-no recycling to an institution strongly committed to changing waste culture – but much more needs to be accomplished.
Recycled Materials as a
Percent of Total Waste
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Currently, AMH recycles everything from bottles and cans, to paper and cardboard, to construction debris and batteries, to consumer electronics and cooking oil. For a complete list of AMH’s recycling program, please read Recycling.
The Green Team has promoted recycling education – where receptacles are located, how to recycle certain items – through flyers and newsletters. Staff education, though, is still a big area of concern, as there are many myths of the recycling culture at AMH. The biggest myth among AMH employees is that the hospital does not actually recycle – an enormous misconception. When the Environmental Services Department collects waste from departments, they put all trash bags (blue or clear) into one big bag or container, which some employees regard as the final step before the waste is hauled away, but it is not. The bags are taken down to the loading dock – which houses the hospital’s waste containers – and are separated into the proper receptacles.
As of September 2010, recycling represents 37.58 percent of the hospital’s total waste stream, positioning Abington Memorial Hospital among the national best practitioners for healthcare organizations.