Background: Environment-friendly practices refer to decreasing energy consumption, using resources carefully and sustainably, and reducing environmental pollution. An environment-friendly hospital is defined as a hospital where energy is saved, carbon emissions are decreased, and productivity and quality are increased. Operating rooms (ORs) account for most wastes generated daily by hospitals. Thus, adopting environment-friendly healthcare practices in ORs will have a positive impact on the environment.
Purpose: The aim of this study was to identify and recommend environment-friendly practices that are feasible for implementation in ORs in Turkey.
Methods: Data on the environment-friendly practices that are currently being practiced in the ORs of hospitals in Izmir Province were collected using face-to-face interviews with nurses who were in charge of ORs in Izmir Province. The interviews were conducted using an OR identification form and Greening the OR Checklist. The study population included all of the hospitals in Izmir Province, and the study sample included 18 ORs in the 11 hospitals that consented to take part in the research. Permission to conduct this research was obtained from the ethics committee of the nursing school as well as from the participating hospitals where the study was conducted.
Results: The hospitals included in the study had, on average, 7.44 ± 7.32 ORs, each of which employed an average of 16.83 ± 17.16 nurses. Four fifths (83.3%) of the ORs always monitored their wastes, and 88.9% gave their batteries to recyclers. In addition, 72.2% renewed their surgical sets to reduce excessive use of materials, and 72.2% preferred using reusable materials instead of single-use materials in their surgical sets. However, 66.7% of the ORs had no environmental team, 93% did not use an environmentally safe surface cleaner, 83.3% did not use sensor controls on lights, and 66.7% did not use LED lights.
Conclusions: Although most hospitals did not have a special team to recommend and enforce environment-friendly procedures, the OR nurses did their best to protect the environment.