Responding to NHS England’s announcement of a scheme to reduce the use of plastics in hospitals, Niall Dickson, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said:
“The NHS needs to lead the way to a carbon-free future and this is a small but important step.
"Many NHS Trusts are doing fantastic work to cut waste and reduce their environmental impact. Just look at Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals – they have removed single use plastics from their restaurants and cafes and there are many other examples showing that the NHS is taking its responsibilities seriously.
"But we have to concede there is a lot more to do. Hospitals and community NHS services are anchor institutions in their communities, almost always the biggest employer having an impact in hundreds of ways. The task now is to lead the way with local government and the private sector in reducing their environmental impact. We need to make sure this timely initiative will be a catalyst for greater progress.”