10 ways hospitals achieve resiliency

The nonprofit organization, Practice Greenhealth, champions best practices for hospital environmental stewardship. On May 9th, it presented Circles of Excellence Awards to member healthcare organizations that excelled in specific categories of sustainability while achieving all-around sustainability.

At the 2018 event, these distinct facets of healthcare sustainability circles were recognized:

Chemicals

In the Chemicals Circle, member hospitals addressed toxicity through use reduction, solid purchasing practices, and by having the appropriate equipment. Honorees also provided hazardous chemical education to their staff and communities.

Climate

Climate Circle hospitals were honored for developing climate programs and for leadership in monitoring CO2 emissions. These hospitals also educated their staff and the community in the health impacts of climate change.

Energy

Member hospitals in the Energy Circle were likely to have Energy Managers and documented energy conservation programs. Using ENERGY STAR and energy use intensity metrics, these hospitals led other healthcare organizations in energy efficiency and reduced energy use over time.

Environmentally Preferable Purchasing

Environmental Preferable Purchasing Circle hospitals favored contract provisions and RFP policies similar to the Federal Government’s Environmental Preferable Purchasing Program. Those principles were reflected in the hospital’s Group Purchasing Organization and supplier interactions.

Green Building

Hospitals honored as Green Building Circle members have incorporated green building standards to refurbishment projects as well as new construction. As a result, their facilities have saved energy and water, used safer materials, and integrated passive solar or other natural design elements. Many of their buildings have earned LEED or similar certifications within the past five years.

Greening the OR

Surgical department best practices in Solid Waste Management (SWM), reprocessing of single-use devices, and OR kit reformulation were among the several programs and metrics seen among Greening the OR Circle award recipients.

Healthy Food

Among the food system policies and education programs at Healthy Food Circle hospitals were sustainable sourcing, food waste prevention, and smart beverage choices. These strategies and more were designed for a healthy people and a healthy planet.

Leadership

Visionary leadership, effective communications, and data tracking were among the factors seen at Leadership Circle hospitals.

Less Waste

Hospitals recognized in the Less Waste Circle had mature, comprehensive programs that achieved high recycling rates and generated low regulated medical waste.

Water

Water conservation programs and efficient water use is what distinguished hospitals within the Water Circle. Their success could be tracked in reduced gallons consumed per square foot and less water use over time.

Sustainable healthcare brings benefits to patients, the staff, and organizational budgets. It is also good for the environment! ecoPreserve has seen the results and been grateful to participate in several projects that prove this.

Alexa Stone
LEED AP, Sustainable Facility Professional, Envision Sustainability Professional - - Alexa has more than 25 years of experience in sustainable and Smart Cities development. Her strategic planning work has served local, state, and federal government, higher education, and private industry. Alexa founded ecoPreserve in 2009 as a team of 3 and has grown the company to over a dozen of the brightest sustainability and project management professionals in the industry.
Alexa Stone

@ecopreserve

Helping organizations improve operations, reduce costs and achieve sustainability through data driven, efficiency focused, planning, reporting & certification.
I liked a @YouTube video https://t.co/UGy9aL3CXU Marrying an UZBEK WOMAN & What to Expect! It Will Shock You How Culturally Different - 2 weeks ago
Alexa Stone

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