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The institute 4 a Circular Society has awarded a €60.000 seed grant for innovative and interdisciplinary research in the Circular Safe Hospitals (CSH) research line.

Last October we issued a Seed Fund Call under the theme: ‘Digital twinning, decision support systems and/or serious gaming for Circular Safe Hospitals (CSH)’, with the goal of granting a project to foster collaboration among EWUU partners (Eindhoven University of Technology, Wageningen University & Research, Utrecht University, and the University Medical Centre Utrecht) in developing digital twinning, decision support systems, and serious gaming solutions that can revolutionize circularity in hospital settings.

Following a thorough evaluation, we are delighted to announce that the VITAMIN project has received a Seed Grants from i4CS.

VITAMIN: EVidence-based CIrcularity STrategies of MedicAl Disposables through Multiscale DIgital TwiNs

What if we could create digital twins that support lifecycle assessment of medical disposables in hospitals to realize evidence-based balanced sustainability actions?

In the pursuit of revolutionizing sustainability practices in healthcare, the integration of digital twins for medical disposables emerges as a promising avenue. This project goes beyond mere visualisation (i.e., digital shadows), as it endeavours to cultivate predictive, actionable, and device-specific digital twins, envisaging a paradigm shift towards evidence-based and well-balanced sustainability measures. Central to this transformation is the capacity of digital twins to forecast the remaining useful lifetime of medical disposables, leveraging insights derived from component degradation due to usage.

Life Cycle Assessment

The primary focus of this project is to identify, quantify, and predict key life cycle assessment (LCA) and performance indicators for medical disposables. The envisioned digital twins will provide evidence-based suggestions for balanced sustainability actions, such as recommending the use of refurbished or recycled devices that maintain sufficient performance to safeguard the desired outcomes of medical procedures.

The digital twins will actively monitor and predict the degradation of critical materials and components within disposables based on their history. Factors such as usage variations, the number of treatments, storage conditions, and environmental factors (e.g., cleaning, temperature, moisture) will be considered.

Additionally, the digital twins will incorporate information on materials and energy usage in treatment rooms, disposable supply chains, hospital logistics, as well as the broader human experience and behaviour layer towards health(care)-sustainability relationship, creating a comprehensive and interconnected network of data and safeguarding ethical and humane design of intelligent technologies

Involved Researchers

Olaf van der Sluis (Tu/e), Wei-Shan Chen (WUR), Indre Kalinauskaite (UMCU)