She Uses What Hospitals Waste to Save Lives


(easy listening music
and children playing) – When I was working
as a registered nurse, I was also traveling to many
different parts of the world. And that’s where I realized
that these hospitals don’t have any medical supplies
to take care of patients. And that’s really when I said to myself, I’m going to figure this problem out. And that’s what I’ve done. My name is Elizabeth McLellan,
and I’m the president and founder of Partners for World Health. Our healthcare system is
extremely complicated. There are many federal rules
and regulations in our country. And as a result of that,
all healthcare centers have to discard medical supplies
because they may have been in a patient’s room. These are not used medical supplies. They are clean, they are unopened, and could be used in the developing world. I started collecting
medical supplies in 2007. And because there was
no place to store them in the healthcare facilities,
I started to take them home. My cellar filled up from
the floor to the ceiling, and it overflowed into
the downstairs bathroom until there was just a little
path that I could follow. And then, eventually,
in September of 2009, I put my money in to
rent the first warehouse. And there are so many people
that have joined with us on this to keep it going. So it has a life of its own
now, which is pretty exciting. (upbeat chamber music) We load the containers
with 15 to 18,000 pounds of discarded medical supplies. We collect these discarded
supplies now from all over the state of Maine,
New Hampshire, Vermont, and 15 hospitals in Massachusetts. And we bring them up here to
our distribution warehouse where we sort through
all of these supplies. We package them, check expiration dates, and we ship the container loads
over to different countries in Asia and Africa, the
Middle East, all over India and Pakistan, Sri Lanka, et cetera. (soft piano music) After the hurricane in Puerto Rico, we identified that there
was a huge need down there. And so we are shipping
the fourth container of medical supplies to be
distributed in Puerto Rico. (laughter) – We have a model that works,
so there’s a way to do this. If I can collect one
bag of medical supplies, now look what’s happened. And so it’s important that
we recognize that there are so many people in our
world that would benefit from these discarded medical supplies. So, that’s why I’m doing this. Because it’s very important
to me that we try to reach out and be committed to something greater than our own self interests and
make a difference in our world. (flowing orchestra music)

100 thoughts on “She Uses What Hospitals Waste to Save Lives

  1. good on her but i wouldn't be pleased if i was treated with those supplies. because it was rejected by hospitals before. i know the law tells them to, but the law must have a reason to tell hospitals to discard them.

  2. Great initiative but you also have to think that if there wasn't the federal policy to throw the material out in the first place then this organization wouldn't be necessary

  3. Omg I dont know why but I feel like crying bcuz this is such a great thing that someone could take the initiative and do. I appreaciate this a lot specially living in a poor country myself.

  4. As a nurse, it really makes me feel.horrible when I have to throw away perfectly good supplies. Wish I could do something, like that, here.

  5. I have work in a charity hosp makunda Christian leprosy and general hospital Bazaricherra karamganj dist Assam India so we need it's important for us we have 400 dellivereya month and so many general patient

  6. How can I help support this? 🏥 I live in California and work for a hospital, this is such a wonderful generosity to see. I witness so much supplies go to waste I would like to see more hospitals joining this cause 💓👍

  7. I need to get in touch with her because wherever I’m at chop I can always help them out trust me you don’t know how much they discard

  8. This is so great! We were talking in school about how all these items go to waste, and this idea was so good. Plastics dont go away they just become smaller and this helps reduce some plastic, since alot of medical tools are made of plastic. This project does not just help people, it also helps our earth!☺

  9. Is this why medical bills are so high? Are we playing for an entire room of medical supplies?
    Lovely work. Thank you.

  10. I am a strong supporter of this, but we need to figure out a way to reprocess dry goods like wraps and instruments so they are safe for the people receiving them. We also have to accept that some items are not fit for use. Those masks being stacked together is a big red flag for me because they cannot be disinfected. They are not safe for people in the US nor in the developing world. It isn’t an argument that the mask could save someone’s life so it’s worth the risk, because it can just as likely make them sick with something that they don’t have resources to treat, especially after these items have been handled so many times. They deserve clean, safe things as much as you do, and we cant pretend that these things are the same or even similar quality. What the video doesn’t say is that a lot of items being discarded are from infectious patients and there’s a risk of them being mixed up due to some people in facilities failing to adhere to protocol. That isn’t this woman’s fault and it’s totally out of her control, which is my point that we need to find a solution to ensure these things are are. She has created an exceptional starting point.

  11. THEY DISPOSE THEM CUZ IF U USE IT U COULD GET AIDS OR GET THERE SICKNESS, ALSO YOU COULD ALSO GET SICK IF SOMEONE IS CONTAGIOUS, OR IT COULD BE SAFE FOR US, BUT NOT SAFE FOR
    PEOPLE WITH BAD IMMUNE SYSTEMS, LIKE IF YOU THINK THAT SHE COULD BE ENDANGERING OTHER PEOPLE THAT USE THEM!

  12. I truly dont understand how we treart Puerto Rico so bad. They are United states citizens and yet they dont even have the basics.

  13. IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776
    The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America
    When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
    He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
    He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
    He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
    He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
    He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
    He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
    He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
    He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.
    He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
    He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.
    He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
    He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.
    He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
    For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
    For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
    For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
    For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
    For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:
    For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:
    For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies
    For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
    For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
    He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
    He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
    He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
    He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
    He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
    In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
    Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
    We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.
    New Hampshire:
    Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton
    Massachusetts:
    John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry
    Rhode Island:
    Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery
    Connecticut:
    Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott
    New York:
    William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris
    New Jersey:
    Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark
    Pennsylvania:
    Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross
    Delaware:
    Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean
    Maryland:
    Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton
    Virginia:
    George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton
    North Carolina:
    William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn
    South Carolina:
    Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton
    Georgia:
    Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton

    Lol I just wrote the Declaration of Independence

  14. 52 people are spawn of satan and disliked this video. It's so great to see that there is good care coming to Africa, Asia, the Middle East, India, Puerto Rico, etc. <3

  15. I’m just questioning that Puerto Rico is in the US, don’t the federal rules apply? I hate that the US wastes so much!

  16. Excuse my ignorance…but what about contamination..sterilization??? This seems like an astounding gesture. But I have sincere questions. If I have missed something please inform me.

  17. You could see the passion, love, and dedication she puts to her work when she almost started tearing up at the end. Much respect for her.

  18. Wait… unused medical supplies are going to landfill? That's outrageous! Well done to this woman and her organisation for finding a solution for this! I hope this can go nation/world-wide!

  19. This got me teary eyed…it is really heartbreaking to know that you can’t give the best service for your patients simply because you don’t have the proper equipment to use.its very frustrating.i can only imagine the gratitude and relief hospital and medical facilities feel when they receive these supplies.more power to you…😊😊

  20. But those scissor things were loose. I'd say save anything sealed but not unsealed.

    And also what about the supplies from cdiff rooms or Tb rooms?

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