Disposable curtains offer ‘a more sustainable option’

HEJ editor, Jonathan Baillie, talks to Steve Parker, Operations manager at Marlux Medical, about the growth in demand for disposable privacy curtains during the pandemic, current best practice in curtain changing, and the latest technology developments that are helping to make disposable privacy curtains a more sustainable option for NHS Trusts.

Steve, I imagine that the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in much higher demand for disposable privacy curtains? Is this the case?  

You’re correct, Jonathan. Disposable privacy curtains came to the fore during the pandemic. Hospitals recognised the benefits associated with being able to quickly change the curtains and dispose of them through their existing waste management channels, rather than having to launder vast volumes of linen curtains and incur the associated laundering costs. With privacy curtains being changed much more frequently during the pandemic, and many hospitals setting up additional treatment bays, Marlux experienced a 200% increase in demand between March 2020 and April 2021. We also noticed a marked increase in the number of NHS Trusts approaching us for guidance on best practice in fitting, replacing, and recycling, disposable curtains.

What measures did you put in place to be able to cope with this increase in demand?

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