Dignity Health | Engaging Employees in Waste Reduction Efforts

In 2012, Dignity Health partnered with its waste vendor Stericycle to implement an Integrated Waste Stream Solutions (IWSS) program in 12 of their facilities.  This program tracks and reports data on several of Dignity Health’s waste streams, including solid, hazardous, pharmaceutical, regulated medical and recyclable wastes. 

Implementing the IWSS program has helped Dignity Health verify the accuracy of their data and enhance the timeliness of the data collection process, while the results of regular waste audits helped pinpoint specific successes and failures. As a result of their efforts to understand and manage their waste profile, Dignity Health has been able to better engage employees by providing relevant, targeted education, and also has been able to identify the locations and waste streams with the biggest opportunity for improvement. 

Dignity Health’s efforts to more closely manage their waste streams have achieved significant financial and environmental outcomes.  Within a year of implementing the IWSS system, Dignity saw an increase in recycling of over 220,000 lbs, moving from a 29.5 percent to 31.2 percent  recycling rate.  At the same time, the organization also saw a significant increase in the levels of employee engagement in its waste stream management practices.