Creating A healthieR Environment for FutuRE patiEnts


Dutch healthcare accounts for 7-8% of the total national greenhouse gas emissions. In hospitals, at least 20% of this is related to the operating theatre. This includes waste, inhalation gases for anesthesia, energy for air refreshment, and medicine residues in wastewater. 

To change the behavior of all stakeholders, this project assembled a very diverse team to make the operating theatre greener by gaining insight into the biggest polluters.

The CAREFREE (Creating A healthieR Environment for FutuRE patiEnts) project aims to fill knowledge gaps but also to provide tools that enhance trust, acceptance, and a change in behavior for the myriad of stakeholders.

The project is coordinated by Maastricht University/MUMC and funded by NWO through the Knowledge and Innovation Covenant’s ‘Collaboration in mission-driven innovation’ (NWO-KIC).

Life Cycle Assessment

Life Cycle Assessment studies will be performed in collaboration with the project partners to investigate which alternatives for current healthcare practices will improve the environmental footprint of the operating theatre. The LCA work will be focused on three topics of the connected work packages: different types of anaesthetics, reusable and disposable trocars, changes in air treatment, and reduction of pharmaceutical residues.


The project will be executed by a consortium with partners from the universities and university medical centers of Maastricht, Amsterdam, and Nijmegen. In collaboration with a wide range of companies and other stakeholders (Fresenius Kabi, B-Braun Medical, PureBlue Water, Waterschap Limburg, Groene Zorg Alliantie, Landelijk Netwerk de Groene OK, Milieuplatform Zorgsector NL, Patiëntenfederatie Nederland, Nederlandse Vereniging voor Heelkunde, Vereniging voor Hygiëne & Infectiepreventie in de Gezondheidszorg, Nederlandse Federatie van Universitair Medisch Centra, Zuyd Hoge School, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment-RIVM).