Environmental Innovation Award for MedShare

MedShare received Acterra’s 2012 Business Environmental Award in the category of Environmental Innovation for their ground-breaking program to recycle surplus medical supplies and equipment.

Acterra’s Business Environmental Awards is one of the San Francisco Bay Area’s oldest and most prestigious environmental recognition programs. Initiated in 1990, it is considered a heavyweight among award programs due to its rigorous application and judging process. “Our awardees must demonstrate their environmental commitment and achievements through a careful vetting process,” states Committee Chair Laura Teksler. “In addition to a thorough written application, the top contenders must demonstrate their programs’ merits firsthand to the judges during a visit to the applicants’ facilities. By the time they are selected to receive our award, they have truly proven that their programs are “setting the bar” in corporate environmental leadership.”

MedShare Western Region Staff

MedShare was recognized for their efficient recovery and redistribution of surplus medical supplies and equipment that helps to improve the environment and healthcare for the medically underserved. As California’s first high-volume medical supply recycler, MedShare’s reuse program is changing the landscape of medical waste disposal in the State.

MedShare collects unused, unexpired surplus medical supplies and equipment from hospitals and medical distributors.  These are items that would be destined for landfills, but instead, MedShare redistributes them to needy hospitals in developing countries as well as community-based health clinics throughout California.

“MedShare continues to deliver innovative solutions for healthcare providers that want to green their operations and we are honored that our waste reduction efforts are being recognized by Acterra Business Environmental Awards,” said Chuck Haupt, Executive Director, MedShare’s Western Region. “In cooperation with leading hospitals and manufacturers we were able to divert an amazing 228 tons of surplus from local landfills in 2011.”

Acterra Award 2012

In Northern California, there are more than 30 hospitals participating in MedShare’s innovative Hospital Recovery Program, including Sutter Health, Kaiser Permanente, and Dignity Health.  These hospitals recognize the local environmental benefit that their contributions have, as well as the impact that they will have on people’s lives around the globe.

“In 14 years of operation as a national organization, MedShare has shipped over 800 forty-foot ocean containers of surplus medical supplies and equipment to hospitals in 93 developing nations,” said Meridith Rentz, MedShare’s CEO & President.  “This accounts for over two million cubic feet of landfill space saved.  We could not have achieved this level of impact without partnerships with forward-thinking health systems and manufacturers of medical supplies who are committed to operating in an environmentally sustainable manner.”

Volunteers: We Are Thankful

This is the time of year for reflection, thankfulness, and gratitude. What is MedShare thankful for? Many, many things, chief among those being our wonderful volunteers.

At MedShare, we’re lucky to host over 18,000 volunteers a year. These generous people and groups help us sort and box the 20,000 lbs of medical supplies that we collect weekly from our hospital and manufacturer partners. The sheer volume of work they provide for MedShare is incredible, and we don’t hesitate to say that our work wouldn’t be possible without them.

Today, we’d like to recognize these wonderful groups that have volunteered in our Western Region recently:

On November 30, 2011, this Kaiser Permanente group sorted 249 lbs and packed 3 boxes.

On December 2, 2011, this Triage group packed 18 boxes.

On Dec. 3, 2011, these Chinese Bible Church volunteers helped sort 1,190 lbs and pack 85 boxes.

On Dec. 3, 2011, Tierney's group helped sort 1,910 lbs and pack 85 boxes.

On Dec. 3, 2011, these DVHS Giving Tree volunteers helped sort 1,686 lbs and pack 50 boxes.

On Dec. 3, 2011, these Safeway volunteers helped sort 1,686 lbs and pack 50 boxes.

On Dec. 7, 2011, these Abbott Vascular volunteers sorted 430 lbs and packed 81 boxes.

On Dec. 8, 2011, this Kaiser Permanente group sorted catheters and packed 39 boxes.

On Dec. 9, 2011, this Kaiser Permanente group sorted 883 lbs and packed 68 boxes.

On Dec. 10, 2011, this Chinese Bible Church group sorted gloves and packed 57 boxes.

On Dec. 10, 2011, this Kaiser Permanente group sorted gloves and packed 29 boxes.

On Dec. 13, 2011, this Chevron group sorted IV supplies and packed 35 boxes.

If you’d like to sign up to volunteer, click here. Thanks again to everyone pictured here, and the many others who aren’t.

MedShare Celebrates 700th Container Shipment

MedShare staff, volunteers and supporters celebrate the 700th container shipment

On Friday, September 2nd, MedShare celebrated a milestone achievement: we shipped our 700th container of humanitarian aid. This shipment paid tribute to A.B. Short and Bob Freeman’s founding vision, and celebrated the success of our past 13 years, during which we’ve shipped over $93 million worth of medical supplies and equipment to 88 developing countries and territories around the world. In the process, over 2 million cubic feet of space has been saved from landfills, as well as millions of lives around the world.

The container was sent from our Western Region Distribution and Volunteer Center in Northern California, and will benefit beleaguered hospitals in Misrata, Libya.

Turn-out at the ceremony was fitting for an event of this magnitude: Mr. Homdi Soliman, Operation Director of HOPE International Relief & Development Agency and sponsor, Dr. Heshaam Fallah, a Libyan-American physician with Kaiser Permanente and project coordinator, the Chief Medical Officer from Sutter Health, Kaiser Permanente representatives, a Council Member from the City of San Leandro, MedShare Trustees and Regional Council members, and many of our volunteers were in attendance. Mr. Soliman and Dr. Fallah spoke about the grave healthcare situation in Libya, and Mary Bersot, Trustee and Western Region Council Chair, shared her appreciation to our staff and volunteers.

“It has been an exceptional experience working with MedShare and all their staff throughout the Libyan conflict. With their extraordinary service and vision, we were able to help save the lives of thousands of men, women, and children,” said Homdi Soliman, Operation Director of HOPE.

The container was sponsored by HOPE International Relief & Development Agency (USA)based out of Columbus, Ohio. I-GO Aid Foundation, based in Malta, Libya, will coordinate delivery of the supplies and equipment to hospitals in Libya. The 1,000 boxes of medical supplies we sent were supplemented with biomedical equipment and durable medical goods, including hospital beds, gurneys, exam lights, exam tables, a ventilator for pediatric and adult patients, surgical packs, syringes, gloves and oxygen masks. Hospitals throughout Libya are dealing with a humanitarian catastrophe, as they are running short on critically needed medical supplies. This marked the fourth shipment we’ve sent to hospitals in Libyacollaborating with these partners.

We must give credit where credit is due: MedShare wouldn’t be celebrating this milestone achievement were it not for our wonderful community. For those that support MedShare through your gift of time, in-kind or financial donations or community advocacy, we thank you for all that you do, and ask that you continue helping us bridge the gap between surplus and need. With your partnership, there is no limit to what we can achieve, and we look forward to celebrating our 1,000th, 2,500th, and 5,000th container shipments with you!

To view more photos of this shipment ceremony, click here.

This is an excerpt from September’s e-newsletter. To read more – including a letter from CEO Meridith Rentz and the story of a medical mission team in South Georgia – click here.

MedShare Celebrating 700th Humanitarian Aid Shipment with Formal Ceremony – Libyan Relief

MedShare to host a formal shipment ceremony for its 700th aid container to beleaguered hospitals in Libya on Friday, September 2nd.

For 13 years, award-winning nonprofit MedShare has bridged the gap between surplus and need by recovering and redistributing surplus medical supplies and equipment from hospitals and medical companies to needy health facilities around the world.  On September 2nd at 9:30 a.m., the organization will celebrate its 700th container shipment of humanitarian aid with a formal ceremony. The container will be sent to benefit beleaguered hospitals in Libya.

I-GO AID Foundation

The container is sponsored by HOPE International Relief & Development Agency (USA) based out of Columbus, Ohio. I-GO Aid Foundation, based in Malta, Libya, will be coordinating delivery of the supplies and equipment to hospitals in Libya. Among the over 1,000 medical supplies and equipment that will be sent are hospital beds, gurneys, exam lights, exam tables, a ventilator for pediatric and adult patients, surgical packs, syringes, gloves and oxygen masks. Hospitals throughout Libya are dealing with a humanitarian catastrophe, as they are running short on critically needed medical supplies.

“It has been an exceptional experience working with MedShare and all their staff throughout the Libyan conflict. With their extraordinary service and vision, we were able to help save the lives of thousands of men, women, and children,” said Homdi Soliman, Operation Director of HOPE.

In its 13-year history, MedShare has shipped over $93 million worth of medical supplies and equipment in 700 tractor-trailer size containers to 88 developing countries and territories around the world. In the process, the organization has saved over 2 million cubic feet of space from landfills, and millions of lives. This will be MedShare’s fourth shipment to hospitals in Libya collaborating with these partners.

“It’s truly remarkable what MedShare has accomplished over the past 13 years.  Our success is tied directly to the strategic partnerships that we have cultivated over the years,” said Meridith Rentz, CEO of MedShare. “We are proud to send over 1,000 medical items to those in Libya that have been dramatically impacted by the turmoil in that country.”

I-GO Aid Foundation is a nonprofit organization that delivers much needed medical and food supplies to the Libyan people, specifically those in cut-off coastal areas of the country. HOPE International Relief & Development Agency is an American non-profit, humanitarian organization dedicated to easing the hardships of the disadvantaged, displaced, and misfortunate people of the world through programs that provide food, shelter, education, and financial means and incentives to start small businesses and industries that could serve as permanent sources of income.

“I am driven by the simple desire to do anything I can to help the thousands of Libyans that are suffering every day,” said Dr. Heshaam Fallah, a Libyan-American physician with Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, CA and primary coordinator of MedShare’s four aid shipments to Libya.

The aid shipment ceremony offers a TV and photo opportunity for the media as MedShare celebrates the impact of their mission through the formal send-off of its 700th shipment of medical supplies and equipment.  The event is scheduled for Friday, September 2 at 9:30 a.m. at MedShare located at 2937 Alvarado St, San Leandro, Calif.