U.S. hospitals are making an effort to use safer chemicals and reduce waste, and they’re seeing results according to a report released by the Healthier Hospitals Initiative. The study demonstrates the results of initiatives designed to improve both operating efficiency and patient outcomes, such as safer chemicals, waste reduction, and energy efficiency.
The purchasing program seeks to transition facilities to using PVC- and DEHP-free devices, greener cleaning products, and furnishings that do not contain halogenated flame retardants, formaldehyde, perfluorinated compounds, or PVC. According to the report, the program has been responsible for an 11% increase in spend on certified cleaning products, 172 hospitals reporting to have made at least one product-line DEHP and PVC-free, and fourteen facilities meeting the goal of purchasing over 25% healthy furnishings.
Efforts to reduce waste have also seen notable results, with 395 reporting hospitals recycling 122,000 tons of waste in 2014, and nearly 70% meeting or surpassing the initial goal of recycling 15% of total waste. Additionally, the HHI’s Leaner Energy Challenge has resulted in avoiding over 73,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions, with the 222 reporting hospitals demonstrating a 2.5% aggregate reduction in energy use since 2010.