Archive December 2017 XVIII, No. 12

Ideas That Work: Go Green With Blue Wrap

3 Ways to Repurpose Your Used Blue Wrap

blue wrap to cover OR floors WASTE NOT Teaneck Surgery Center reuses blue wrap to cover OR floors and donates the rest to animal shelters.

Go Green With Blue Wrap
3 Ways to Repurpose Your Used Blue Wrap

The blue wrap we use to cover our instruments is a constant, bulky source in the waste we produce, and it's hard to find ways to reuse it. Over the years, though, we've found a few different methods of repurposing effectively.

Floor covering. One is by covering the floor under the patient surgical site during procedures. Before any operation, we prep the skin with betadine and chlorhexidine gluconate, both of which can stick to the floor and be very difficult to clean, making OR turnover lengthier than it needs to be. The blue wraps, however, save us time between procedures since they cover the floor and prevent it from getting sticky. The time we save on room turnover, as a result, is huge.

Cord covering. Another issue we decided to use blue wrap to fix was the hazard of electrical cords and lines extending from different pieces of equipment on the OR floor. The conditions were less than safe for our docs, nurses and techs. In some cases, there are as many as 6 to 8 lines on one site connecting to the wall, so we decided to use blue wrap to cover the cords on the ground, making it safer for providers to walk around the OR without damaging equipment, or worse, injuring themselves.

Animal shelters. Once we've repurposed the blue wrap as much as we can, we then donate the used supply to animal shelters. Our OR tech Tish Valente regularly volunteers at Bergen County Animal Shelter, and since it was her idea, she transports the used wrap in bags to the shelter so they can cover the floor of their dog and cat cages.

By repurposing blue wrap, we not only save money, time and effort, we also keep our process environmentally friendly.

Scherliani Almeida, RN, BSN
Teaneck (N.J.) Surgical Center
schealmeida8989@gmail.com

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