Innovative space will enable a circular economy for pharmaceutical giants.
Irish digital therapeutics player HealthBeacon plc has established a new Green Labs facility in Dublin that will enable pharmaceutical firms to develop circular economy solutions.
The facility will also serve as an R&D centre for sustainable solutions for sharps waste.
“Unfortunately, today billions of injectable waste devices and hundredss of millions of sharps bins end up in household trash, landfills or incineration facilities”
HealthBeacon is a leading Irish digital therapeutics company that develops products for managing injectable medications for patients in the home. The company’s most recent peer-reviewed published evidence demonstrated up to a 26% improvement in injectable medication adherence by patients using its technology.
Smart sharps solutions
Health Beacon CEO Jim Joyce with Audrey Derveloy, general manager and country president Novartis Ireland; and Tánaiste Leo Varadkar, TD.
According to the World Health Organisation, each year an estimated 16 billion injections are administered worldwide. HealthBeacon Green Labs is a positive step towards addressing the global challenge of sustainably managing patients’ waste and supporting pharmaceutical companies to engage in more sustainable waste management practices.
The company has already forged a partnership with leading pharma player Novartis Ireland to use the Green Labs to create a platform to provide innovative sustainability solutions quickly and easily for patients on Novartis treatments.
The first chapter of this partnership is the provision of reusable sharps bins to rheumatology, dermatology and neurology patients. Smart technology reminds the patient to take their medication and notifies them when their sharps bin is nearing capacity. The full sharps bin is then collected from the patient’s home, undergoes a validated washing regime and can then be returned to the patient for re-use, ensuring an environmentally friendly service for patients.
“Novartis are proud to partner with HealthBeacon on this project,” said Audrey Derveloy, country president of Novartis in Ireland. “We know from feedback from patients in Ireland, and with the increased provision of healthcare in patients’ homes, that it is more important than ever for organisations to partner on developing sustainable solutions to medical waste management.
“Novartis’ goal is to optimally treat disease, with the HealthBeacon ‘smart’ sharps bin being just one example of a beyond the pill solution designed to ensure the best possible outcomes for patients. This new partnership gives us the opportunity to go a step further and work to provide a fully circular pharmaceutical supply chain for patients in Ireland, moving Novartis closer to its ambition to be carbon neutral across our supply chain by 20303.”
Indigenous Irish company HealthBeacon currently employs over 50 staff at its Dublin headquarters and operates across multiple markets with significant presence in the United States, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands.
“Unfortunately, today billions of injectable waste devices and hundredss of millions of sharps bins end up in household trash, landfills or incineration facilities,” said HealthBeacon CEO and co-founder Jim Joyce.
“Today, in partnership with Novartis in Ireland we are taking a major step in reversing those unsustainable practices by launching our new EPA licensed Green Labs facility. This facility will allow us to sustainably process Sharps Bins and Injectable waste across Ireland. Together through innovative solutions and partnerships we can improve patient care in a more sustainable way.”
Powering the circular economy
The new R&D operation was welcomed by Enterprise Ireland CEO Leo Clancy as evidence of the scaling prerogative of Irish businesses.
“Enterprise Ireland is proud to partner with HealthBeacon as they continue to play an important role in improving patient outcomes by harnessing smart technology.
“This latest step in their journey, as they partner with Novartis, also brings sustainable practices to the fore which is critically important, as the transition to a low carbon and circular economy is a whole of society challenge, and I congratulate both firms for their efforts in this space.”
Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Leo Varadkar, who opened the new facility, added: “We need to take better care of our planet. This generation should aim to pass it on to the next in a better condition than we inherited it.
“A big part of this involves using fewer of the earth’s resources and recycling, repairing and reusing materials more often. It’s called the circular economy. Medical waste I know can be a particular challenge given the need to make sure quality and safe standards are high and consistent and sterile to prevent infection. But there are solutions. I’m really happy to officially open this Green Labs facility from HealthBeacon. Congratulations to the team on their first partnership with Novartis Ireland too. I’m sure it will prove to be a beneficial collaboration for both partners.”