Publication type: Conference other
Type of review: Not specified
Title: The environmental impact of hospitals
Authors: Keller, Regula
Stucki, Matthias
Muir, Karen
et. al: No
Conference details: 9th International Conference on Life Cycle Management, Poznan, Poland, 1-4 September 2019
Issue Date: 3-Sep-2019
Language: English
Subjects: Health; Life cycle assessment; LCA; Environmental impact
Subject (DDC): 338.927: Environmental economics and sustainable development
362.11: Hospitals and related institutions
Abstract: Goal: Which aspects of a hospital are relevant from an environmental point of view? Which impacts can realistically be reduced? The project “Green Hospital” aims to identify the environmentally relevant processes in hospitals as well as to suggest practical improvement options that at the same time increase the efficiency of the underlying processes. Although healthcare was determined to be the consumer sector with the fourth largest environmental impact, most research focuses on the three largest sectors: nutrition, mobility, and housing. Our research aim to fill the gap. Methods: A preliminary LCA was carried out using rudimentary data obtained by questionnaire from several hospitals in Switzerland. The results of this analysis were combined with the results of an improvement potential analysis carried out by project partners from the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics to determine which environmentally relevant processes also have significant improvement potential. Detailed questionnaires were then sent to two partner hospitals to collect data in these specific areas. A second, more detailed LCA is currently being carried out to quantify the environmental impact of hospitals. Results: Catering, heat production and electricity were found to be the most environmentally relevant in our preliminary LCA. The five areas identified in our this analysis were: catering, energy provision, transport and mobility, waste treatment, and medicine, medical products, laundering, housekeeping and office supplies. For these chosen areas, specific data was collected to allow a broader scope for the second analysis. The results of the detailed analysis will be combined with the results of the process analysis to compile a list of best practices. Our partner hospitals will implement chosen practices later in the project. These will lead to reduction in the environmental impact along with an improvement in efficiency.
Further description: SESSION: Sustainable Health Management – Performance of Health Services
Fulltext version: Published version
License (according to publishing contract): Licence according to publishing contract
Departement: Life Sciences and Facility Management
Organisational Unit: Institute of Natural Resource Sciences (IUNR)
Published as part of the ZHAW project: Green Hospital
Appears in collections:Publikationen Life Sciences und Facility Management

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