St John of God Murdoch and WA Ostomy Association team up to improve transport of stoma devices


Stomal therapy nurse Kate Brereton, warehouse manager Gary Baxter and WA Ostomy Association volunteer Phillip Gregory.
Stomal therapy nurse Kate Brereton, warehouse manager Gary Baxter and WA Ostomy Association volunteer Phillip Gregory.

ST JOHN of God (SJOG) Murdoch has joined forces with the WA Ostomy Association to use the hospital’s recyclable materials for the safe and hygienic transport of medical devices used for stomas.

After volunteering at the WA Ostomy Association, stomal therapy nurse Kate Brereton realised that SJOG could find a new use for objects like bubble wrap and plastic pouches.

“I contacted our warehouse manager who was more than happy to assist so we got the ball rolling and started a weekly donation,” Ms Brereton said.

“The Association does such amazing work supporting those who live with stomas and being able to help them while being environmentally friendly is a wonderful thing.”

The WA Ostomy Association is a non-profit organisation that helps more than 3000 West Australian people living with a stoma.

A stoma is an artificial opening on the abdomen wall used to collect waste after some surgeries for bowel or bladder cancers or inflammatory bowel diseases.

Phillip Gregory, a volunteer at the Association, said it was often difficult to find suitable packing materials that were both hygienic and effective for transport.

“We mail out approximately 400 parcels to our members each week,” Mr Gregory said.

“We had been using newspaper, which isn’t always in easy supply and not as hygienic as the bubble wrap and plastic pillows which we now have in plentiful supply.”

In combination with two other recycling initiatives, the weekly donation has had a significant impact on reducing the amount of landfill the St John of God Health Care warehouse produces.

Four months ago the warehouse was sending three skip bins to landfill per week but that has now been slashed to one.