Ole Grøndahl Hansen, project manager of the PVCMed Alliance, spoke to over 100 participants at the Vinyl SA 2014 Conference in Johannesburg on 22 October 2014. The conference was organised by the South African Vinyl Association, SAVA, which became a member of PVCMed Alliance earlier this year.
Mr. Hansen headlined three main activities that PVCMed had carried out the last year. First of all, he spoke about a project that dealt with an evaluation by authorities of some existing alternatives to classified phthalates that can be used in PVC medical devices. Then he presented a new booklet dealing with the benefits of using vinyl flooring, ceiling and wall covering in modern hospitals. Finally he outlined how PVCMed participates in discussions and activities related to recycling of medical plastic waste.
Among the other speakers at the SAVA conference in Johannesburg were representatives from the Global Vinyl Council, which is a global entity consisting of representatives from PVC industry associations around the globe. The objective of GVC is to exchange views, knowledge and improvements related to sustainability issues on manufacture, use and recycling of PVC.
The CEO of SAVA, Delanie Bezuidenhout, the organisers of the Vinyl SA 2014 conference, said that she invited PVCMed to give a presentation in Johannesburg because she finds it important to show the African delegates that there are some interesting developments going on in Europe in the area of PVC based medical devices. The recycling of medical plastic waste is an especially interesting issue to discuss, according to Mrs. Bezuidenhout: “New ideas pass through three main phases … first people believe it cannot be done, then they start seeing reason and think that it could probably be done, and finally they say “I knew it was a good idea after all!” This is the same with reference to the recovery and recycling of PVC medical waste here in South Africa. Five years ago the industry was very against the idea, but I have now noticed an excitement on a broad platform to support SAVA during the implementation of our first PVC recycling scheme at healthcare facilities in South Africa. We are looking forward to the project and are fortunate to be a part of the PVCMed Alliance community where we can tap into professionally developed educational material and case studies of successful similar projects implemented world-wide.”