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Medical Device Packaging and Sustainability

Sustainability is one of the main extending ambitions in medical devices industry. The alterations outlined in this paper can be prepared to pack designs to meet these goals that will as well culminate other profitable efficiencies. Options are to raise product protections, improve manufacturing and enhance end-user convenience (UN Report 34).

There exist no questions that sustainability is an essential tool for medical device packaging. It is important for myriad purposes. The approach can be varying in medical device packaging since the result of packaging breakdown could be disastrous. Material breakdown can result in unproductiveness and probably lead to human sufferings. When the medical devices are staked too high, material package design and selection choices are of basic importance.

That being explained, medical device packaging is not barred from sustainability tables. All industries dealing with packaging should readdress sustainability of medical devices for the sake of health of the earth and for longevity and health of all markets that they serve. The propellers of medical device packaging are to give a chance for sterilization of the tools, protect the tools from being damaged, allow the productiveness to be upheld until the tools are used, and aid aseptic management where applicable. Sustainability of material sources are not a fundamentally driver in the device package design procedure yet.


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One more material that is frequently used in medical device packaging is the aluminum (foils). This is naturally a coating in a lamination. Most of the people argue that, aluminum makes one of the mainly environmentally resonance device packaging material for its capability to be reused countless epoch with little or completely no squalor in properties. Some other argues that, the energy needed to make the aluminum foil from bauxite make them one of the slightest friendly environmentally materials (UN Report 35)

Technology will affect the sustainability of the medical devices and other packaging devices in the days to come. There are companies which are looking forward at manufacturing plastics from more sustainable sources. For instance, Dow is establishing a technology which will offer them to make polyethylene papers from sugarcane. DuPont has manufactured several elastomers and polymers from renewable resources like corn and soy. These materials can be utilized in processes like in the injection molding, extrusion and blow molding that makes them probable candidates for days to come in medical device packaging.

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While it is not likely that, medical device packaging will become pioneering forces for adapting renewably founded material, once the material is developed and the most appropriate exam can be conducted to demonstrate the suitability for utilization in medical device packaging applications, medical device packaging may play an essential position in the sustainability.

Sustainability becoming an investment fundamental

Sustainability, which is meeting the requirements of the present-day without concession of the capability of days to come generations to achieve their own necessities, is a frequent corporate objective. Determining the reasonableness of how to attain those goals is quite more difficulty. Packaging and the effects it can implicate on marketing sustainability has been a concentration of developers of consumer device packaged possessions. Appealing to the consumer’s environmental scruples, addressing the demand of the seller like Wal-Marts and their packaging device Sustainability Scorecard, as well as enjoying the price savings usually linked with sustainable device packaging alternatives have all been essential drivers for the industry. The medical tool industry has become much slow at adopting these business ambitions. Although organizations like Baxter International, Johnson and Johnson, Allergan and Abbott Laboratories, have been much recognized for their unique sustainability hard work, medical tools companies generally, are inadequately represented in records of companies, which rank big in social packaging responsibility (UN Report 34).

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On the other hand, the sustainability movements are companies and maturing, including medical devices manufacturer and their affiliate suppliers, making it a fraction of their investment procedures. Industry recognizes that, the rising trends towards not reusable medical provisions, though advantageous in several means, have an effect on the ecology and constructs it more difficult to meet states initiatives like the one explained in the UK’s 2005 Sustainable Development Strategies and the Renewed EU of 2006 Sustainable Development Strategy. Organizations are looking for means to have their tools more ecologically friendly. A fraction of that hard work concentrates on device packaging. Abbott highlighted its goals to attain a reduction of about 6% in the total amount of device packaging utilized for various products. This program has achieved positive results. By designing its closable 0.34 litre plastic bottles the total amount of the plastic utilized in the bottles have been lowered by 6.3 percent. The reduction of  the weight bottles as well lower the cost of transportation that assist in saving an additional 2.65 million hundreds litre of fine petrol every year. Ebbott has as well developed a recyclable, reusable box that reinstate a larger one use box for shipments of doctors’ tasters, which requires refrigeration (Renewed EU 35).

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Sustainability defined

Sustainable Device Packaging Coalitions defines sustainable device packaging as the packaging which

  • Meets promotion criteria for all cost and performance
  • Is beneficial, healthy for persons, communities and safe throughout its life span
  • Is sourced, transported, recycled and manufactured using renewable oomph
  • Optimize the utilization of recycled and renewable source material energy
  • Is developed using clean manufacturing technologies and best procedures
  • Is manufactured from materials clean in all possible end-of-life cases
  • Is physically redesigned to optimize energy and materials
  • Is efficiently recovered and utilized in industrial and/or biological tightened loop cycles.

Configuration to upgrade sustainability

Even though, the sustainable option for medical device packaging might not be as wide as those for customers packaged tools, the chances for packaging upgrading are important. Focusing on sterile barriers systems the basic packaging, the initial field to consider is the device packaging configurations. Medical tools intended for the sterile usage are usually double packed: an inner device package that is intended for sterile fields and offering a sterile blockade is placed in an outer device package that is as well able to maintain a sterile wall. Operating area nurses opts for this approach since it offers for errors and support presentations into sterile fields. On the other hand, these plans can double the total amount of materials required for the device package.

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The answer is to redesign a solitary sterile wall system to promote aseptic liberation of the products successful plans

  •  Offer the operating space nurse to gasp packaged products securely
  • Remains easy to unlock even when one is on hand gloves
  • Presents devices in order the coiled or loose parts are secured
  •  Endorse  “dumping” or “flipping,” which is, the capability to move the devices into the Sterile area without the help of sterile nurses
  • Offer sterile nurses to remove and grip products.

The designed packages are radically different. Other than of the two trays, the stylets now are encumbered into a pouch of chevron. After being sterilized, the pouches are put inside a DVD container for distribution and shipping that eliminates the requirement for the use of a carton. The current package is 90% smaller than the preceding packaging and design waste is lowered by 44%. To add on this, PVC has completely been removed from packages. Not astonishing, the savings cost are as well impressive (Renewed EU 37).

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Material choices

The Material technology keeps on advancing. There exist a big number of current blends and resin combinations, which can be utilized to upgrade the toughness and durability of the packaging resources. There are important chances for down-gauging materials, especially the flexible device packaging materials. The Thermoformable, form-fill-seal application is a prime instance of such. Current material contributions allow thickness lowering on the figuring bottom web of 35 percent or much more as well as much 40 percent on the sides of top web page.

Biopolymers received important attention. These resources are manufactured from biomass like sugarcane, and that are renewable materials. Initially, this appears appealing. Nevertheless, biopolymers require much more energy to reproduce than in the traditional polymers. Not astonishing, they are as well expensive. Their excellent performance is unique especially with respect to moisture and heat resistance. Amazingly, biopolymers are in general classified as compostable which means that, they need more moisture and heat to decompose than any biodegradable material. Biopolymers like the PLA (polylactic acid) have been utilized for implants since they will securely decompose inside the body.Unluckily, contemporary, they do not offer packaging solutions.

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Biocompatibility concerns in general exclude the utilization of recycled resources in the sterilized barrier system. Various companies have been sandwiching recycled resources amid virgin resources. This needs a recycling stream which is carefully controlled to avoid an introduction of unknown or unwanted materials. The reward– risk equation favors not the employment of waste in the sterilized barrier system. However, protective wrapping like cartons can be an exceptional place to think of the utilization of recycled resources.

Although firms may not wish to employ recycled resources in their sterilized barrier systems, resource choices that may be recycled give many merits. All-polyester lading for a polyethylene or a polyester terephthalate glycol (PETG) trays may allow the production waste and the finished goods to be recycled in one waste stream. Correspondingly, pairing high density polyethylene (HDPE) trays with peelable HDPE lids does allow easy reprocessing in the HDPE wastes stream.

When thinking of secondary protective wrapping, moving from cartons, even when prepared from recycled paperboards, to flexible pouches can offer important gains. A study found that flexible pouches consumed a third the energy, to generate half of the carbon dioxide, and required an eighth the total of wrapping per 100 g of products shipped contrasted with paperboard envelopes. Additionally the paperboard envelopes formed seven more times landfill wastes by weight as compared to the pouches. To make an important move, however, in this field will necessitate the restructuring of inner supply rooms’ layout (Securing tomorrow 46).

Sustainability less waste, more value

Options are there to increase products protection, improve end-user convenience and enhance manufacturing efficiencies while employing less wrapping, consuming less natural material and generating fewer wastes. Through the application of technology and considerate design, the medical design producers can achieve triumphant results for sustainable wrapping.

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Medical Packaging Sustainable wrapping Tips

Pharmaceutical and Medical packaging often must comply with stern regulations regarding products protection, tamper resistance and safety, often knocks off sustainability, the top list of priorities. Hither to environmentally-friendly is nevertheless possible while concentrating on consumer safety and product. Medical packaging sustainability tips include the use of corrugated resources and utilizing proficient designs (Renewed EU 35).

Corrugated sustainable packaging resources

Medical equipment that is packaged and transported in plastics for example, Styrofoam packaging employed for insulation reasons can be replaced often with corrugated resources. Corrugated vessels are versatile and strong, with an advanced design that guarantees optimal cushioning, protection and insulation for the products. Additionally, the material is tremendously recyclable, mostly made from reprocessed cardboard and simply reused and reprocessed after disposal. Corrugated wrapping materials offer safety, sustainability and protection for pharmaceutical commodities (Securing tomorrow 46).

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Sustainable Efficient Design

The materials are not only vital to the parcels’ sustainability, but also the design contributes to the environmental effect. Efficient designs employ negligible harmful material achievable, making wrapping compact and as light as possible to condense energy consumption and fuel costs. Sustainable ingredients, for instance water-based adhesives and inks, can condense the use of fossil fuels and oils. Medical wrapping may become more friendly-environmentally by considering all design, packaging, shipping components and production, and coming up with sustainable resolutions for all.



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