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Helping you to go green-1

Going green is not just a trendy catchphrase anymore; it is a responsibility that all industries, including dentistry, need to take seriously.

Dental practices, like any other healthcare provider, can have a negative impact on the environment, caused by energy consumption and water usage, increased waste production, use and disposal of hazardous materials and a reliance on natural materials that are in short supply. Fortunately, there are many simple and effective ways for dental practices to reduce their environmental footprint and contribute to a healthier planet.

Lets look at what you can do to go green, and what we’re doing too!

Practice Green: what is it?

Practice Green is a Henry Schein initiative that aims to help dental practices become more eco-friendly by providing solutions to support, educate, and enhance the environmental sustainability efforts of our customers.

Through Practice Green we hope to empower the global healthcare community to positively impact the future of the planet by reducing the ecological footprint and promoting sustainability. The healthcare industry has a large environmental impact; we cannot stop treating patients, so we must find a sustainable way to continue.

Our goal is to help healthcare professionals to increase their sustainability efforts while continuing to provide high-quality patient care. To this end, we provide a selection of products, resources, and services to help create a greener practice.


Want to go green but not sure where to start?

The prospect of going green can be a daunting one, it can be difficult to know where to start and what to prioritise.

Start small: As with all things, it’s best to start small and work your way up towards bigger changes.

  • Paper: how much paper is your dental practice using? Can you reduce or even eradicate it? Perhaps you can look into digital practice management solutions to reduce the amount of paper you use, such as Software of Excellence and Dentally!
  • Recycle: make sure you’re recycling everything you can, with dedicated recycling bins and encouragement to staff.
  • Energy: install eco-friendly lightbulbs, and if you want to go the extra mile, think about motion sensors, so that no excess energy is being used.
  • Staff: offer cycle to work and carpooling incentives to your staff, and make sure they are all kept up to date with your latest sustainable policies.

What next: There are also bigger changes you can make on the road to sustainability, they will need more of an investment of time, but will be worth it in the long run.

  • Suppliers
Do research on the suppliers you use; are they sustainable? Are they making moves to become more sustainable? If not, you might want to consider changing. Read our blog on working with your suppliers for sustainability here.
  • Products
Many products in dentistry contain or are packed in single-use plastics for hygiene reasons, but have you switched to green products wherever you can? From bamboo toothbrushes to silk floss, solutions are out there. Check out our own offering of green products here.

Another great resource you can utilise in your journey to sustainable dentistry are materials from British Dental Association (BDA).

Understanding the necessity for sustainability, the BDA has outlined the main goals for sustainable dentistry in the UK here, which offers a great guide to where to get started on the bigger issues. As well as this, the BDA have been part of the Dental Sustainability Advisory Group and have contributed to the CSH Dental Sustainability guide, which you can find here!

Who you do business with matters

When improving sustainability of your practice you will need to look at what you are doing, and what your business partners are doing. Perhaps there is a more sustainable supplier you can work with? Or a new business partner that can help you make your practice more sustainable.

Mark Topley

If you’re looking for guidance on how to make your practice more sustainable, then you should check out our business partner Mark Topley. Mark is a renowned Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) integration consultant and 'The CSR Coach' in the dental industry.

By teaming up with Mark, you'll get access to a range of resources, plans, and training that can help transform your practice into an eco-friendly powerhouse. As a member of the Responsible Dentistry Club, you'll receive monthly guides that break down sustainability practices into easy-to-follow steps. Plus, over time, you'll have the chance to earn Dental CSR Certification.

Mark has also launched Go Practice Green, a subscription service that works around your busy schedule to break down sustainability into manageable goals that won’t adversely affect patient satisfaction, or your bottom line. Get the support you need to make green changes and showcase your success with certification.

Mark's expertise and guidance will help you integrate sustainable practices into your daily operations, making a positive impact on both your business and the environment.

Initial Medical

Waste management is one of the most difficult elements of going green for dental practices thanks to the strict regulations surrounding the disposal of hazardous and non-hazardous waste. That is where Initial Medical can help.

As experts in healthcare waste management, Initial Medical provides tailored solutions for dental practices to ensure efficient waste disposal. From conducting surveys to recommending and installing waste management systems, they're with you every step of the way.

Not only that, but they're committed to making sustainable choices wherever possible. They offer a range of eco-friendly solutions like sustainable waste containers, recycled mats, and eco-friendly soaps to make sure your practice stays green.

Plus, Initial Medical has a track record of top-notch Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) performance. They've been recognised as one of the top 20 UK companies for ESG performance on the Euronext Vigeo UK 20 and the ESI Excellence Global index[1].

Greener Dentistry UK

Much like our own Practice Green initiative, Greener Dentistry, founded by Davinder Raju, is designed to assist dental practices in adopting greener and more sustainable practices. By joining this movement, your practice can join a community dedicated to making a positive impact on the environment.

Greener Dentistry provides you with a comprehensive toolkit tailored specifically to dental practices. This toolkit simplifies the process of implementing sustainable practices, making it easier for you and your team to go green.

As well as helping break down green goals into attainable bites, the Greener Dentistry toolkit also awards you certification when you have completed a certain percentage of goals, so you can prove to patients that you are walking the walk when it comes to sustainable dentistry.

Get to know Davinder and some of the best approaches to sustainability in your dental practice, in this video!

The Greener Dentistry toolkit is part of the free subscription membership tier, while getting access to the Greener Dentistry Alliance Certification logo is just £12/mo and part of the premium membership tier, which also comes with other benefits.

So don’t waste any more time, let Greener Dentistry be your partner on the path to a greener future for dentistry!

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UK Marketing Ops Team spending a volunteering day with Medway Valley Countryside Partnership, protecting sapling trees.

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UK Marketing Ops Team spending a volunteering day with Medway Valley Countryside Partnership, protecting sapling trees.

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UK Marketing Ops Team spending a volunteering day with Medway Valley Countryside Partnership, protecting sapling trees.

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TSMs cleaning up litter around Garraunboy Church in Ireland.

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TSMs from design and creative volunteering with Communigrow.

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TSMs from design and creative volunteering with Communigrow.

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TSMs from design and creative volunteering with Communigrow.

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Field sales consultant Wayne Greyling using a volunteering day with the Wildlife Trust in Hampshire.

What have we been doing to be more sustainable?

With all our ideas about how to help you practice sustainably, we’re sure you want to know some of the things we’ve been doing.

  • Henry Schein joined the Business Ambition for 1.5oC initiative.
  • We achieved ISO 14001 certification.
  • We started offering a range of green products.
  • Hybrid working, paperless offices, and eco-friendly lighting have been introduced wherever possible in our UK offices.
  • Electric car charging ports are being introduced at our offices.
  • An emphasis has been put on recycling in our offices, and cardboard and plastics that need disposing of are now baled more effectively for more efficient transport.
  • The stretch materials used in our warehouses are now made from 30% recycled
  • In partnership with ADEE and EDSA we have launched the Oral Health Professional Educators’ ‘Practice Green©