Digital Health in the Circular Economy (DiCE)

Addressing the Issue of Increasing Digital Health Waste

Digital healthcare devices contain valuable raw materials that are essential to the European economy. Currently many of these devices end up in landfill or are incinerated meaning these raw materials are lost. A new approach is needed at EU-level to facilitate the re-use, refurbishment and recycling of the products to ensure long-term sustainable use of these raw materials.

The DiCE project aims to address this. It focusses on extending the lifetime of digital healthcare devices by developing and piloting solutions across the whole product life-cycle.

DURATION: 2022 – 2026

SCOPE: Europe

FOCUS AREA: Resource Circularity

FUNDED BY: European Union’s Horizon Europe programme

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Did you know?

0

million units of medical wearables were placed on the market in Europe in 2020

0 %

expected annual growth rate of digital health devices by 2027

54%

Recycled e-waste in Europe

Only 54% of all electronic waste is reported as collected in Europe (compared to 17.4% globally), but rates are significantly lower for small devices and digital health devices.

Driving the Transition to Circular Digital Healthcare

The DiCE collaboration involves 20 organisations from nine countries, representing the manufacturing industry, research, and recycling sectors.

A central objective of DiCE is to extend product lifetime as far as possible. DiCE will focus on testing and piloting solutions for a product’s end-of-life. The project will take into consideration circular design, state-of-the-art refurbishment, remanufacturing and recycling technology that could allow maximum recovery of the product, its components and, when reuse options are no longer available, its materials.

DiCE will thus support transition from a fragmented and linear “take-make-waste” business model towards a circular and sustainable one, allowing the reuse of products and recovery of components and raw materials.

Project Scope

Eco-design

to incorporate features that prioritise optimal circular end of use options

Collection

to increase the quantity of devices segregated

Reverse logistics

for ensuring more devices are returned for refurbish-ment or remanufacturing
 

Refurbishment and remanufacturing

processes for increasing the lifetime of devices

Recycling

of devices to maximise material recovery

Get Involved!

Would you like to join the stakeholders’ network? DiCE wlecomes input from all stakeholders and will invite you to participate at the workshops, webinars, conferences, and presentation-based events held during the project. Specifically, stakeholder consultation events will take the form of co-creation workshops, business modelling interviews, policy meetings and clustering sessions.