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Green Chemicals and the Detoxing of Health Care 

Green Chemicals and the Detoxing of Health Care
Green Chemicals and the Detoxing of Health Care

Kathy Gerwig

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date: 27 January 2021

A growing body of scientific literature suggests, with increasing confidence, that some significant share of the 84,000 industrial chemicals registered for use in the Toxic Substances Control Act’s chemical inventory, plus the thousand or more new compounds added to it annually, are among the key environmental determinants of chronic diseases that today affect an estimated 133 million Americans. Ironically, the health care sector is a large user of chemicals including cleaners and disinfectants, flame retardants in furniture, and chemicals of concern in medical products and pharmaceuticals. As more hospitals develop comprehensive chemicals policies, we’re beginning to see fundamental changes in the design, manufacture, use, transparency, regulation, and disposal of chemicals, all driving toward improved human and ecosystem health.

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