Our products should be safe for our users. Moreover, they should be designed to produce minimal environmental impact throughout the entire product lifecycle, including choice of material, manufacturing methods and handling of used products. To succeed in this mission, Environmental Life Cycle Assessment (ELCA) is used as a tool by our decision makers in the research process.
Chemicals and REACH
To minimize negative environmental impact, we continuously review the chemicals we use. Our target is to replace as many hazardous chemicals as possible with equally effective, but less harmful, solutions. Any hazardous chemicals we use are generally used in very limited amounts, and many are used only for laboratory purposes.
By definition, Wellspect HealthCare is a downstream user of chemicals and a producer of articles that include substances. We have been mapping all our key materials and substances to ensure they all are pre-registered, and subsequently registered, by our suppliers. We have not received any signals that indicate a risk of substances or materials being withdrawn from the market as a result of REACH requirements.
As a producer of articles within the EU, Wellspect HealthCare is required to notify the European Chemical Agency, ECHA, for authorization if any article contains substances on the REACH Candidate List of substances of very high concern. At present, this obligation only concerns the content of DEHP in our PVC-based articles. However, we are currently working towards substitution of DEHP.
In the LoFric processes, we use organic compounds as solvents classified as Volatile Organic Compounds, VOC. VOCs are the main chemicals we use. VOC emissions from production are collected in carbon filters with over 99 percent efficiency. The collected solvent can then be purified and used again. Over 90 percent of our consumed solvent has been recycled through this internal process.