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Spohn Hospital Shoreline

Year Submitted: 2003

Process: Sterilization

Industry: Medical Facility

Wastes Reduced: Emissions, Air

Substance: CFC/ Ethylene Oxide

Equipment: Hydrogen Peroxide

Location: Corpus Christi TX

No. of employees: 1800

Contact: Bob Pegg

Phone: (512) 881-3002


The environmental improvement committee identified emissions from the Operating Room’s sterilizers as an opportunity to improve environmental conditions. The sterilizers use a 12/88 mixture of ethylene oxide (ETO) and chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) to heat moisture sensitive surgical instruments. ETO is classified as carcinogenic and CFC adversely affects the atmosphere.

P2 Application:

A hydrogen peroxide system was selected as the best method for providing effective surgical instrument sterilization, while eliminating hazardous emissions. The sterilizer system uses hydrogen peroxide in its gas plasma state to fuel the sterilization process. The new system’s environmentally safe by-products are water vapor and oxygen.

Environmental Benefits:

The sterilization process no longer emits hazardous vapors.

Details of Reductions

Additional Information :

Operating costs were directly reduced by over $1,000 per month. Additional indirect costs were also realized from the elimination of ETO training, monitoring, alarm system maintenance, and other administrative expenses. This change was a definite winner for the employees, hospital, and environment alike.

Source: TCEQ

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