Computer Recycling

Hospitals require various equipment to provide efficient services to their clients. The equipment ranges from small and portable devices to large equipment. What happens to the various types of equipment at the end of their useful life? What are the disposal procedures for all these devices and who should oversee the process?

Non medical device recycling

These devices are usually used for administrative duties in the hospital and include phones and computers. Computers are used either as primary or secondary storage devices for all patient records. Given the confidentiality of the information contained therein, it is paramount that all the data is erased and the digital footprints completely overwritten before they can be disposed off. These computers could then be taken to computer recycling plants where they are dismantled into their respective components for reuse and recycling.

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Recycling medical equipment process

It is good to note that different hospitals will have differing guidelines on the disposal of all types of equipment. There will also be documents to be completed and signed by the hospital management team before any equipment is shipped away or collected by the manufacturer. Therefore, all teams must familiarise themselves with these guidelines such that they understand what needs to be done when the need arises.

Given the crucial role played by the equipment in the hospital, it is necessary to await the arrival and assembly of the replacement equipment before the disposal process begins. This prevents the occurrence of gaps that could endanger the lives of patients. After this is done, the next step is sanitisation and decontamination of the equipment to ensure that it does not carry anything they could endanger the lives of those who come across it. This process is usually clearly indicated in the equipment manual. In the case that this is not available, the hospital policy should prevail. This process should be carried out by the technical staff members who operate the equipment in order to ensure that it is done correctly.

Next in line is the determination of determine of the destination of the machine. In some cases, the equipment will be collected by the manufacturer so that they can recycle some of the constituent parts. In such a case, the procurement department could get in touch with the manufacturer and set up a date for the equipment collection. Otherwise, the machine is disassembled and packaged properly such that different parts can be delivered to respective recycling centres based on their constituent materials.

Other forms of disposal of hospital equipment

Sometimes, disposal may imply the process of handing down machines from an advanced hospital to one that may not have the resources to acquire new ones. It can also involve selling the equipment to other hospitals. In such a case, the authorisation for the disposal must be signed by the management team. In the case of sale, a competitive bidding process may be used or the hospital may identify the most viable buyers and approach them. The sale process has to be transparent and the finds raised utilised to enhance the operations in the hospital. This type of disposal is popular when the hospital wishes to upgrade to the latest equipment in the market.