Sustainable Practice and Behaviour change in Healthcare Waste Management: A Review of the Literature.
Published: 04 November 2011 by MDPI AG in The 1st World Sustainability Forum session Environmental Sustainability
Abstract: The management of waste in the United Kingdom National Health Service (NHS) has considerable real and potential costs in both financial and environmental terms. Despite discussion within the literature and the publication of strategies to address these costs little evidence is found of attempts to implement a reduce, reuse, recycle (3R) philosophy in NHS waste management. This paper discusses the findings of a literature review on waste management and behavioural change approaches which might aid the implementation of a 3R philosophy in waste management within healthcare settings. The literature indicates the need for an understanding of individuals, including knowledge of their values, attitudes, norms and behaviours in order to enable a positive response to change. Behaviour change theories may provide a framework of achieving constructive changes in waste management. Further research is needed, specifically on the views of stakeholders responsible for the safe management of waste.
Keywords: waste management • behaviour change • sustainability • healthcare