For most clients undergoing cosmetic surgery, the environmental implications of their cosmetic surgery procedures are not their main priority. In fact, eco concerns are unlikely to even cross the minds of patients in general.
Though the healthcare market as a whole (public and private) is a predominantly responsible and proactive sector, many patients and practitioners fail to acknowledge its potential environmental impact. Sustainability is becoming a priority for many leading practitioners but is not yet being taken seriously on a comprehensive level.
Healthcare-related emissions in particular are a growing problem across much of the world. The healthcare sector is, albeit quite ironically, a major pollution source in most developed nations.
Operating rooms and surgical settings in particular have the potential to be problematic, necessitating compensatory efforts to reduce harmful emissions and promote sustainability.
The results of a study that took place in 2018 found that 7% of Australia’s entire annual CO2e emissions came from the healthcare industry. Of which, around 50% could be traced back to hospitals. The figure was even higher in the United States, where a full 10% of all CO2e emissions were attributed to the healthcare sector, falling to around 4% in England.
It is estimated that operating theatres and surgical environments in hospitals and clinics account for up to 30% of a medical facility’s total waste. Which is surprising, given that they occupy a comparatively small space within such facilities in a physical sense.
This is due to the fact that in environments where surgery is performed, energy use is extremely high. Air conditioners, ventilation, heating and a raft of electrical equipment - all of which contributes to energy consumption that can be anything from 300% to 600% higher than any other comparable part of the facility.
Such is also true in clinics where cosmetic surgery is performed - procedures such as a nose job, facelift or neck lift can result in major energy consumption.
Anaesthetic gases are also known for having a negative impact on the environment. It is a little-known fact, but anaesthetic gas metabolization by patients undergoing surgery averages just 5% to 20%. This means that anything up to 95% of the gas used escapes into the atmosphere if appropriate recovery systems are not used.
The cosmetic surgery sector has long-since passed the point where a responsible approach to service provision should be considered mandatory. Today, the attitude of a clinic and/or cosmetic surgeon speaks volumes for their professionalism and attitude in general.
Taking all possible steps to reduce environmental impact and improve sustainability is the responsibility of all practitioners working within the industry. Samuel Mattine takes pride in adopting a responsible and eco-conscious attitude to the services he provides, working hard to run a sustainable practice.
To learn more about any of Mr Mattine’s specialist areas or to discuss your requirements in more detail, book your obligation-free consultation today