Each year in May the nation celebrates National Hospital Week, a celebration of the history, technology and dedicated professionals that make our hospitals exceptional places to receive care. National Hospital Week is a time to recognize hospital staff and promote hospitals’ mission of health and wellness. The 2013 National Hospital Week was May 12-18. National Hospital Week dates back to 1921, when it began at the suggestion of a newspaper editor who hoped a community wide celebration would alleviate public fears about hospitals. The celebration launched in Chicago, succeeded in promoting trust and good will among members of the public and eventually spread to facilities across the country. America’s hospitals and health systems are always ready. National Hospital Week reminds our communities of the essential role the men and women of our hospitals play in caring for friends and neighbors.
In honor of National Hospital Week last week, May 12 – 18, 2013 AMDR wishes to thank America’s hospitals!
Posted on May 24th, 2013
Posted on May 23rd, 2013
HMMS-NJ is a leader in the development and advancement of healthcare resource and materials management within the state of New Jersey. It provides professional development and offers its members the opportunity to learn, network, and expand their knowledge base within the profession of healthcare materials management.
Today HMMS-NJ is hosting one of its regular workshops featuring Dan Vukelich, AMDR President presenting on “Reprocessing And Sustaining Your Bottom Line,” and Nancy Chobin of Sterile Processing Service Barnabas Health System presenting on “Setting Up a Successful Sustainability Reprocessing Program.”
The event will be a ½ day and also include a Vendor Fair.
Thursday May 23, 2013
The Kenilworth Inn
Kenilworth, NJ 07033
Full info here
Posted on May 22nd, 2013
One Day Event: September 4, 2013 | Tampa, Florida
The 1st annual Greening the OR Symposium celebrates progress and milestones made on the journey to promoting environmentally friendly practices in the operating room and invites new thinking in innovative ideas to overcome our challenges, and concepts that will result in new areas to address to drive further progress.
The OR is the epicenter of today’s hospital, generating about 42% of the hospital’s revenue. A primary source of hospital admissions, the OR, drives significant costs related to equipment, supplies and personnel, and generates 20-30% of the hospital’s total waste volume. As the healthcare sector explores ways to become more sustainable, it makes sense to focus on those departments with the highest costs, greatest inefficiencies and/or largest volumes of waste. The Greening the OR Initiative works to coalesce the body of knowledge around sustainable practices in the OR, substantiate these practices with data and case studies, and develop guidance that can be shared across the sector. The financial benefits of these programs are significant, with millions of dollars in potential savings.
- Describe the environmental footprint of the OR and the impact on human health
- Delineate the business case for a Green OR
- Frame the benefits of green programs in the OR from a cost, safety, engagement and environmental perspective
- Use a virtual green OR and case study data to highlight implementation
- Describe the need for a team approach and delineate potential stakeholders
- Facilitate group discussion on strategies to initiate these programs.
More Information, Pricing, and Schedule here
Posted on May 16th, 2013
Greenbiz reports in a poll conducted by Johnson &Johnson and Practice Greenhealth among 900 hospital administrators and other health care professionals attending last month’s CleanMed Conference and Exposition in Boston, survey findings reveal that the health care industry is expanding its definition of the “bottom line” to include sustainability. Ninety percent of those surveyed said their hospital had increased investments in sustainability initiatives from 2011 to 2012.
Show me the money: Financial concerns a key sustainability priority
Many hospitals and clinics are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so it’s not surprising that the industry has a large environmental footprint. Costs associated with the energy consumed and waste generated continue to increase, which is an obvious priority for hospital administrators.
The financial impacts of sustainability are of key concern to administrators when it comes to prioritizing how they go about greening their hospitals and organizations. In fact, 37 percent of hospital administrators polled said “reducing overall operational costs” is their highest priority. More specifically, hospital administrators cited energy usage (37 percent), products and supplies (28 percent), and waste disposal (22 percent) as key areas of focus when it comes to reducing operational costs. Hospitals also say decreasing waste (33 percent) and creating a greener, healthier environment for patients (22 percent) are other priorities of their sustainability strategies.
One example of this is an initiative at Metro Health Hospital in Wyoming, Mich., which focuses on purchasing greener medical devices to help save money, increase recycling rates and reduce waste. Through the purchase of reprocessed single-use devices from Sterilmed, a Johnson & Johnson company, between 2008 and 2010, Metro Health saved more than $235,000 and avoided nearly two tons of waste, as well as reduced costs associated with disposing regulated medical waste.
Read full article here
Posted on May 15th, 2013
Infection Control Today report that Stryker’s Sustainability Solutions has received two prestigious awards from the group purchasing organization Novation for Environmental Excellence. Stryker provided single-use medical device reprocessing and remanufacturing services to over 680 members served by Novation in 2012, helping them realize a total of $75 million in supply cost savings and divert more than 2.3 million pounds of medical waste from landfills.
“At Novation, we partner with suppliers that embrace our purchasing philosophy of ensuring patient safety, environmental responsibility and cost-effectiveness to deliver total value to the members we serve […] Stryker’s reprocessing programs deliver significant, measurable results to hospital members, helping us create a more sustainable model for healthcare delivery.”
The members served by Novation (including members of VHA Inc., UHC, Children’s Hospital Association and Provista) purchase a wide variety of reprocessed single-use medical devices from Stryker, including compression sleeves, EP catheters and laparoscopic devices. Reprocessing programs allow hospitals to reallocate their scarce resources to enhancing patient care through investments such as hiring more nurses or the purchase of much needed equipment.
Our business is to enable hospitals and surgery centers to use their resources in a smarter way through next generation sustainable device solutions,” says Kevin Liszewski, vice president of marketing and corporate accounts for Stryker Sustainability Solutions. “As Novation’s nationally awarded full-service supplier for reprocessing services, we share and contribute to the financial and environmental goals of over 680 Novation-served alliance members every day. It’s an honor to be recognized for the value we deliver through our strong partnership.”
Full Story here
Posted on May 15th, 2013
Improving the health of the community has long been the priority of all healthcare systems in the United States. The goal of sustainable design is, in essence, the same. When the two intersect, patients, staff, and the community benefit.
By integrating green into all aspects of the organization, the aim is to improve employee safety (real and perceived) by reducing environmental exposure to toxic materials (drugs, cleaning supplies, building materials). Also topping this list is the need to reduce energy and waste costs. On a community level, the provider has increased the number of environmentally related partnerships with community organizations.
Inova health system in Virginia success is proof-positive with a cost savings of more than $225,000 annually in reduced waste disposal, 3 million pounds of recycled goods, 5,000 tree seedlings in the local community, and more than $45,000 spent on local produce. When surveying employees, 99.1 percent noted that sustainability is important to them. When designing facilities for Shore Health in Maryland, there were 15 to 16 percent savings in line with hospital occupancy since facilities have gone green.
President Obama recognized Geisinger Health System by saying, “We have to ask why places like the Geisinger Health System in rural Pennsylvania can offer high-quality care at costs well below average. We need to identify the best practices across the country, learn from the success and replicate that success elsewhere.”
Read the full story here
Posted on May 10th, 2013
Healthcareix reports that “the practice of reprocessing single-use medical devices arouses the suspicion of some hospitals and healthcare leaders. But many more are finding that they can save millions of dollars in costs for their organizations by reprocessing alone.”
Hospitals are starting to factor “green revolving funds” into their budgets to “finance these initiatives, which invest in their energy-efficiency strategies…Then they are taking the return on those energy and waste-reduction initiatives to invest in the next level.”
Founder of Healthier Hospitals Initiative, Gary Cohen described, “If you aren’t doing those things, you just aren’t operating an efficient business in healthcare. On the waste side, there’s almost no capital expenditure at all, it’s just process change, [toward] recycling and waste segregation, so that waste goes down, so that doesn’t spend any money. That’s just attention, it’s just a matter of learning from others. Reprocessing saves lots of money.”
HHI’s report states, “It demonstrates the transition of healthcare sustainability from grassroots to leadership offices, indicating that it is becoming less of a one-off trend and more of a strategic priority for healthcare organizations.”
Posted on May 10th, 2013
In an article honoring “Green Champion” OR nurse Victoria Rice-Bean of the University of Washington Medical Center, Practice Greenhealth discussed how “looking to new and innovative sustainable solutions is exciting, but it’s also a good idea to examine existing programs that might not be as glamorous, but are just as beneficial and important to the organization’s mission. The University of Washington Medical Center (UWMC) in Seattle, Washington, has been working on greening initiatives for several years, and recently decided to take a deeper dive into the operating room department.”
Victoria Rice-Bean, the OR nurse honored, discussed how she was “shocked at how much waste a large surgical department generated. We do a lot of big cases, and there was an extraordinary amount of ‘garbage’ at the end of each case. Initially, I doubted my ability to change attitudes and practices in such a big facility. However, greening our operating room was so important to me that I went ahead and made the effort anyway.”
UWMC has implemented a reprocessing program, saving more than $383,000 annually in combined supply and disposal costs, as well as diverting 5.25 tons of waste from the landfill.
Our efforts have not been limited to recycling, however. We have educated staff on the appropriate use of red biohazard bags, drastically reducing their use and associated expense. We were also trained in the use of reprocessing bins, provided by Stryker Corporation. We found that many items previously going into garbage or sharps containers can be reprocessed. These bins represent the only truly cost-free waste disposal for the OR, and increasing their utilization saves the hospital money and protects the environment from excess landfill.
Full article at Practice Greenhealth here
Posted on May 8th, 2013
In a 2010 Health Care Facilities Sustainable Operations Survey by the American Society of Healthcare Engineering, they indicate that 79 percent of healthcare facilities opt for sustainable features as a way to curb costs. Green design is neither a passing fad nor a marketer’s repackaging and reselling of the same old ways of doing things.
Since the 1980s, virtually every industry has downsized—except healthcare, which plows ahead like the seemingly invincible Titanic. Now, most industry analysts believe past methods for doing business are crumbling and major changes lie ahead.
From a national standpoint, the healthcare industry spends $6.5 billion on energy each year that’s eventually passed along to consumers. If healthcare providers were able to save 20 percent on energy consumption, it could save consumers $1 billion a year. The 20 percent goal is completely within reach, given current technologies, and emerging innovations will only sweeten the savings.
Posted on May 8th, 2013
Health Care Without Harm (HCWH) has honored Bill Ravanesi—a photographer, documentarian, activist, and tireless champion for social justice with its Environmental Health Hero Award for his contribution to the implementation of sustainable health care.
“Bill is one of the most selfless and devoted activists I have ever met,” states HCWH president and co-founder Gary Cohen. “He epitomizes the work celebrated by Health Care Without Harm’s Environmental Health Hero Award. “He has been one of the critical anchors of the organization since its inception and has consistently created innovative programs that have moved across the country.”
Ravanesi has been with HCWH since 1997 and has over 30 years of experience in the nonprofit sector covering health care, public health, and environmental issues. Currently senior director of HCWH’s Green Building and Energy Program, Ravanesi co-coordinates the Boston Green Ribbon Commission’s Healthcare Working Group, assisting Boston hospitals to reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions and to become champions for climate change.