Washington, DC- U.S. Representative Mike Bost (IL-12) today introduced the bipartisan VA COST SAVINGS Enhancement Act, which will save the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) tens of millions of dollars annually and improve care for our veterans. The legislation requires the VA to install on-site medical waste treatment systems in VA facilities where it is determined this will result in a cost-savings within 5 years.
“I completely understand that most folks probably don’t think too much about medical waste treatment systems,” said Bost. “I didn’t either. That was until I saw the tens of millions of dollars being spent on the VA’s generally inefficient process of medical waste disposal. This bipartisan legislation is a straightforward, commonsense solution that embraces proven technology that will free up millions of dollars for the VA to better serve our veterans.”
In 2012, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) reported to Congress that on-site medical waste treatment at individual VA facilities may cost half as much as sending waste off-site to treatment locations. However, despite the efficacy of such a program, little implementation has ever been initiated.
Current waste treatment technologies have demonstrated to be safer, more efficient, more cost-effective, and more environmentally friendly compared to previous technologies. In addition, onsite disposal reduces hazards associated with storing waste on-site and transporting it through communities to regional disposal centers. Implementing this technology will align the VA with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) best practices for infection control, and VA hospitals will no longer truck millions of pounds of hazardous waste on our roads.