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Innovative Recycling and Composting Program at Sansum Clinic


Thursday, February 14, 2013
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Left to Right: Chris McNamara, SVP of Operations; Cathy Ellis, MA, Rheumatology; Alberto Ortega, All Ways Clean; Jill Searchinger, Lead RN, Allergy; Juan Vera, All Ways Clean; Neive Tierney, City of SB, Environmental Services; Frank Hotchkiss, SB City Councilmember; Erica Morris, MA, Family Medicine; John Stampe, Environmental Services Manager; Helene Schneider, Mayor of SB; Kathleen Rodriguez, Patient Services Manager, Pesetas; Nelia Abuyen, Director, Pesetas; Vince Jensen, President and COO; Eric Lohela, City of SB, Environmental Services; and Kurt Ransohoff, MD, CEO and Chief Medical Officer.
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Left to Right: Chris McNamara, SVP of Operations; Cathy Ellis, MA, Rheumatology; Alberto Ortega, All Ways Clean; Jill Searchinger, Lead RN, Allergy; Juan Vera, All Ways Clean; Neive Tierney, City of SB, Environmental Services; Frank Hotchkiss, SB City Councilmember; Erica Morris, MA, Family Medicine; John Stampe, Environmental Services Manager; Helene Schneider, Mayor of SB; Kathleen Rodriguez, Patient Services Manager, Pesetas; Nelia Abuyen, Director, Pesetas; Vince Jensen, President and COO; Eric Lohela, City of SB, Environmental Services; and Kurt Ransohoff, MD, CEO and Chief Medical Officer.

In June 2011 the Service Core Group at Sansum Clinic’s multi-specialty clinic at 215 Pesetas Lane embarked on a project to improve recycling and reduce landfill waste. This is the first outpatient medical facility in Santa Barbara that is composting exam table paper and hand towels, displaying truly cutting-edge environmental stewardship. The new yellow dumpster customized for Sansum Clinic by MarBorg is in place, staff has been trained, and the program is underway.

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

• January 2011 Sansum Clinic sent 80% of our trash to the landfill and 20% to recycling.

In April of 2011, after getting approval from the Service Core Group, Sansum Clinic’s location at 215 Pesetas Lane consulted with the City recycling program to assist the Clinic in reducing landfill. The Clinic started by putting up more recycling signs and blue cans throughout the Clinic, then eliminated many small trash cans and replaced them with small black hanging baskets. The effort began in the administrative offices and nurses stations and was later expanded to include the medical offices.

• Starting in February 2012 with more recycling efforts in place, the Clinic sent 60% to landfill and 40% to recycling.

Eric Lohela of the City’s recycling program then discovered that the Clinic can compost hand towels and exam table paper and created a custom color chart for compost-recycle-trash for our building.

• As of December 2012 the Clinic is sending 40% to compost, 40% to recycle and only 20% to landfill.

This is excellent for the environment and affords us a net savings on trash services each month. Neive Tierney from the City has trained housekeeping and building staff. In the future we will add food scraps to our program. For now we want to focus on the two large items, table paper and hand towels, until we are sure the staff, the housekeeping staff and Marborg have it all working smoothly. To accomplish the composting step, we are adding yellow trash cans to all exam rooms and replacing the tall table paper cans with tall yellow cans.

Comments

Independent Discussion Guidelines

Hooray for anyone and any facility/restaurant/school, etc who/that composts his/its kitchen scraps and other biodegradable waste. Yippee.

chilldrinfthenight (anonymous profile)
February 15, 2013 at 1:04 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Is no one a little nervous about patient waste (exam table paper) being composted and returned to use? I am a big advocate for this stuff but can't we go too far?

RHS (anonymous profile)
February 15, 2013 at 10:15 a.m. (Suggest removal)

You don't think that paper is sterilized? How about other forms of paper people recycle: napkins, cups, plates, mail that's been thru Allah knows what, aren't there the same concerns that have long been remedied RHS?

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
February 15, 2013 at 1 p.m. (Suggest removal)

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