It is clear that there is a global imperative for the healthcare industry to find solutions to some of the negative effects medical waste is imposing on the environment. Hence, the healthcare leaders as well as many emerging organizations are working to pioneer the industry into a more sustainable green machine. Few of the recent examples are cited as following:
- Siemens, whose businesses range from power plants to medical imaging machines, has recently planned to dedicate a growing portion of its business to create environmentally friendly infrastructure, with products like green heating and air conditioning systems.
- GE Healthcare collaborated with Asklepios Hospital Group in Germany to decrease the carbon footprint of a pilot hospital centre situated in the city of Hamburg. This joint venture is expected to raise energy efficiency at the hospital by 30%, while in the meantime diminishing energy consumption by 30% and growing the extent of renewable in the energy blend by up to 30%.
- Runnymede Healthcare Centre has managed to consistently reduce its energy use by at least 5% every year since 2014.
- Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh is amongst the first LEED-honoured children hospitals in the world. The facility is paperless with water efficient systems, better parking facility, excellent public transportation and recycling of water and materials.
- Great Ormond Street Hospital (children’s healthcare facility) in the UK is another example. The hospital invested $572 million for redevelopment to replace services incorporates a range of green features. These include a generator with waste heat recovery systems.
- This solar-powered teaching hospital in Mirebalais, Haiti collaborated with Partners in Health to install 1,800 solar panels. They provided services to 185,000 people in primary care services in Haiti.
The management of healthcare waste requires increased attention and diligence to avoid adverse health outcomes associated with poor practice, including exposure to infectious agents and toxic substances. One such initiative is the Green Hospitals concept, which is expected to have a critical impact on the therapeutic process in time to come. Future hospitals are expected to focus more on wellness and modify into environment-friendly spaces rather than being only a provider of healthcare facilities.
As hospital structure projects continue to develop and stay on a relentless uptrend, healthcare providers are progressively looking to present environment-friendly practices and green initiatives into the design, structure, and management of facilities. This is a move for sustainable healthcare facilities to reduce the carbon footprint of hospitals and the integration of modern “Green Building” design components into the environment to expand patient care and permit them to feel more at ease.
As the convergence of green initiatives and wellness continues to gain momentum, the Healthcare industry is expected to face new demands. To deal with these shifts, healthcare providers will need to address the various wellness programs gaining in prominence; navigate new and emerging sustainable technologies; and cater to shifting priorities among medical companies, hospitals and healthcare facilities and patients. As these demands grow, healthcare providers will also need the right balance of talent and capabilities to compete and thrive in this evolving environment.
– Victor Mukherjee,