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Hashtag Gesundheit e. V. – Sustainability in the hospital sector

Sustainability in the hospital sector

February 23, 2022

No comments

Contributed image: Akil Mazumder from Pexels.

Sustainability in the healthcare sector Part 2: The ecological footprint of hospitals

In the first article on sustainability, we already talked about climate change as one of the biggest challenges for our society. Human health is intimately linked to environmental impacts, and thus climate change and its impact on the environment.

Since the health sector is responsible for a a large share of greenhouse gases (4.4 (4.4% of global CO2 emissions), greater than the global CO2 emissions of
air travel (2% of global CO2 emissions), it bears a great responsibility.
1 A comparison by the Viamedica Foundation impressively shows that hospitals are intensive large-scale consumers are, because: An average hospital bed in Germany consumes approximately as much energy as four newer single-family homes.2

For these reasons, hospitals also have a responsibility to become active in the area of sustainability. Hospitals are therefore increasingly establishing systematic sustainability management.

The three sustainability dimensions

In the field of sustainability management, hospitals are caught between economic, ecological and social requirements. Sustainability is not limited to environmental protection, but is rather formed from these three dimensions (ecological, economic and social). The dimensions are viewed as pillars that act in conjunction with one another, enabling systematic sustainability management.

<span style=”font-weight: 400″>potential in terms of environmental sustainability exists above all in the areas of material procurement and consumption, laundry and food supply, transport and mobility, and energy. The social sustainability focuses on people and their needs. The economic dimension refers to the long-term safeguarding of the company’s success. It describes the mindful use of human and material resources.

Figure 1: Sustainability dimensions3

Sustainability reports from hospital chains

Companies such as Asklepios or Helios already record their sustainability activities in the form of sustainability reports. Germany’s largest hospital chain Helios published a sustainability report for the first time in 2019. In doing so, the Group is guided by the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).. For the implementation of the sustainability goals of the hospital chain, a separate staff unit was established to address the issue.

Figure 2: Sustainable Development Goals4

The report shows how diverse the topic of sustainability is in all three sustainability dimensions and which measures were implemented in the reporting year. Sustainability management is a colorful bouquet of measures ranging from responsible personnel management and sustainable building planning to energy efficiency. However, sustainability in the hospital faces the challenge of always keeping hygiene requirements in mind and not neglecting them. The report also crystallizes the relevance of the stakeholder dialog in order to meet the expectations of the various stakeholder groups. The aim here is to find out and discuss the relevant topics for the individual stakeholder groups with regard to sustainability.

In addition, Helios monitors various key figures in relation to sustainability performance and thus forms a control basis for future developments. For example, energy consumption per planned bed, greenhouse gas emissions and waste are measured. It is clear from the report that sustainability must be embedded in a long-term corporate strategy that is evaluated on an ongoing basis.5

Sustainability reports like Helios’ will increasingly be produced by smaller hospitals in the future, as the expansion to sustainability reporting continues. As part of the EU’s revised directive on non-financial reporting, hospitals with more than 250 employees will be required to prepare a sustainability report from 2023.6

Networks as a support option

For hospitals that want to become active in this area, there are platforms and networks that offer exchange and support on the topic of sustainability. These include, for example, the “Green Hospital Initiative”, “KLIK green” and “Global Green and Healthy Hospitals (HCWH)”. The KLIK green project has already trained climate managers in 250 hospitals.7HCWH has developed a framework to facilitate sustainable practices in water consumption, waste management and energy management.

It is clear that sustainability is a central task for hospitals, which at the same time also brings with it a great deal of potential. Even though measures in the area of sustainability management are often associated with investments and do not have a direct impact on patient care, acting in a climate-friendly manner goes hand in hand with positive effects. For example, sustainability can be a competitive factor and can have a positive effect on employee recruitment.

The goal of hospitals should be to consider sustainability when creating long-term strategies and plans in all areas of the organization.

Sustainability survey 2022

It’s up to you! Take our healthcare sustainability survey by February 28.

Go directly to the survey here

References:

1 Cf. Bibliomedmanager (2021): Leading clinics sustainably, link: Managing clinics sustainably (bibliomedmanager.de) & Cf. Globometer (n.d.): CO2 emissions from global aviation, Link: CO2 emissions from aviation worldwide (globometer.com).

2 Cf. f&w (ed.) (2021): Investing to save, issue 08/21

3 Own presentation based on: Nachhaltigkeitsdreieck or the 3 pillars of sustainability (umweltmission.de)

4 Own representation based on: THE 17 GOALS | Sustainable Development (un.org).

5 Cf. Helios Kliniken GmbH (2021): Sustainability Report 2020 – Strong into the Future, link: Helios_NHB2020.pdf (helios-gesundheit.de).

6 Cf. Bibliomedmanager (2021): Leading clinics sustainably, Link: Managing clinics sustainably (bibliomedmanager.de).

7 C f. KLIK Green (n.d.): project description, link: KLIK – Climate manager for clinics: project description (klik-krankenhaus.de).

Did you like this article? Then feel free to share it on your social networks:

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LinkedIn

Anika Schneiders

Anika Schneiders has been a member of Hashtag Health since December 2020. In the association, she mainly supports the #sustainability team. Anika graduated in 2021 with a degree in business administration with a focus on healthcare management and is currently completing a trainee program at a hospital chain. She already had her first contact with the topic of sustainability in the healthcare sector during her studies and is now pursuing the topic outside of her studies.

The post Sustainability in the hospital sector appeared first on Hashtag Gesundheit e. V..

<a href=”https://hashtag-gesundheit.de/oekonomie_politik/nachhaltigkeit-krankenhaussektor/” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Source

Sustainability in the hospital sector

February 23, 2022

No comments

Contributed image: Akil Mazumder by Pexels

Sustainability in the healthcare sector part 2: The ecological footprint of hospitals

The first article on sustainability already discussed climate change as one of the biggest challenges facing our society. Human health is intimately linked to environmental impacts, and thus climate change and its impact on the environment.

Since the health sector is responsible for a a large share of greenhouse gases (4.4 (4.4% of global CO2 emissions), greater than the global CO2 emissions of
air travel (2% of global CO2 emissions), it bears a great responsibility.
1 A comparison by the Viamedica Foundation impressively shows that hospitals are intensive large-scale consumers are, because: An average hospital bed in Germany consumes approximately as much energy as four newer single-family homes.2

For these reasons, hospitals also have a responsibility to become active in the area of sustainability. Hospitals are therefore increasingly establishing systematic sustainability management.

The three sustainability dimensions

In the field of sustainability management, hospitals are caught between economic, ecological and social requirements. Sustainability is not limited to environmental protection, but is rather formed from these three dimensions (ecological, economic and social). The dimensions are viewed as pillars acting in tandem to enable systematic sustainability management.

<span style=”font-weight: 400″>potential in terms of environmental sustainability exists above all in the areas of material procurement and consumption, laundry and food supply, transport and mobility, and energy. The social sustainability focuses on people and their needs. The economic dimension refers to the long-term safeguarding of the company’s success. It describes the mindful use of human and material resources.

Figure 1: Sustainability dimensions3

Sustainability reports from hospital chains

Companies such as Asklepios or Helios already record their sustainability activities in the form of sustainability reports. Germany’s largest hospital chain Helios published a sustainability report for the first time in 2019. In doing so, the Group is guided by the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).. For the implementation of the sustainability goals of the hospital chain, a separate staff unit was established to address the issue.

Figure 2: Sustainable Development Goals4

The report shows how diverse the topic of sustainability is in all three sustainability dimensions and which measures were implemented in the reporting year. Sustainability management is a colorful bouquet of measures ranging from responsible personnel management and sustainable building planning to energy efficiency. However, sustainability in the hospital faces the challenge of always keeping hygiene requirements in mind and not neglecting them. The report also crystallizes the relevance of the stakeholder dialog in order to meet the expectations of the various stakeholder groups. The aim here is to find out and discuss the relevant topics for the individual stakeholder groups with regard to sustainability.

In addition, Helios monitors various key figures in relation to sustainability performance and thus forms a control basis for future developments. For example, energy consumption per planned bed, greenhouse gas emissions and waste are measured. The report makes it clear that sustainability must be embedded in a long-term corporate strategy that is constantly being evaluated.ized.5

In the future, sustainability reports like Helios’ will also increasingly be published by smaller hospitals, as the expansion of sustainability reporting continues. As part of the EU’s revised directive on non-financial reporting, hospitals with more than 250 employees will be required to prepare a sustainability report from 2023.6

Networks as a support option

For hospitals that want to become active in this area, there are platforms and networks that offer exchange and support on the topic of sustainability. These include, for example, the “Green Hospital Initiative”, “KLIK green” and “Global Green and Healthy Hospitals (HCWH)”. The KLIK green project has already trained climate managers in 250 hospitals.7HCWH has developed a framework to facilitate sustainable practices in water consumption, waste management and energy management.

It is clear that sustainability is a central task for hospitals, which at the same time also brings with it a great deal of potential. Even though measures in the area of sustainability management are often associated with investments and do not have a direct impact on patient care, climate-friendly actions are accompanied by positive effects. For example, sustainability can be a competitive factor and can have a positive effect on employee recruitment.

The goal of hospitals should be to consider sustainability when creating long-term strategies and plans in all areas of the business.

Sustainability survey 2022

It’s up to you! Take our healthcare sustainability survey by February 28.

Go directly to the survey here

References:

1 Cf. Bibliomedmanager (2021): Leading clinics sustainably, link: Managing clinics sustainably (bibliomedmanager.de) & Cf. Globometer (n.d.): CO2 emissions from global aviation, Link: CO2 emissions from aviation worldwide (globometer.com).

2 Cf. f&w (ed.) (2021): Investing to save, issue 08/21

3 Own representation based on: <span style=”font-weight: 400″>Sustainability triangle or the 3 pillars of sustainability (umweltmission.de)

4 Own illustration based on: THE 17 GOALS | Sustainable Development (un.org).

5 Cf. Helios Kliniken GmbH (2021): Sustainability Report 2020 – Strong into the Future, link: Helios_NHB2020.pdf (helios-gesundheit.de).

6 Cf. Bibliomedmanager (2021): Leading clinics sustainably, Link: Managing clinics sustainably (bibliomedmanager.de).

7 C f. KLIK Green (n.d.): project description, link: KLIK – Climate manager for clinics: project description (klik-krankenhaus.de).

Did you like this article? Then feel free to share it on your social networks:

Instagram

LinkedIn

Anika Schneiders

Anika Schneiders has been a member of Hashtag Health since December 2020. In the association, she mainly supports the #sustainability team. Anika graduated in 2021 with a degree in business administration with a focus on healthcare management and is currently completing a trainee program at a hospital chain. She already had her first contact with the topic of sustainability in the healthcare sector during her studies and is now pursuing the topic outside of her studies.

The post Sustainability in the hospital sector appeared first on Hashtag Gesundheit e. V..


Continue reading: https://hashtag-gesundheit.de/oekonomie_politik/nachhaltigkeit-krankenhaussektor/

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