Kemptville District Hospital (KDH) is pleased to announce it has been awarded Silver status in the Green Hospital Scorecard (GHS) measuring participating hospitals’ annual environmental performance.
“We are delighted that our ongoing sustainability efforts have been rewarded with the Silver rating for the fourth year running,” said the hospital’s Building Services Manager, Tammy Buehlow. “And I’m proud to note that we’ve been able to increase our overall score each year so that we are now very close to achieving Gold status.”
The Green Hospital Scorecard is a project of the Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care. It measures a hospital’s energy and water conservation, waste management, pollution prevention, and corporate leadership, planning and management, and allows facilities to benchmark their results against those of other hospitals. The just-announced 2018 GHS results pertain to data reported for 2017.
Andy Pinhey, KDH’s Chief Financial Officer and Vice President of Operations, commended Buehlow and her team for leading the hospital to the achievement of Silver status once again. “Tammy and our ‘Green Team’ have been real champions for improving our environmental performance,” he said. “And I’m happy to say that their passion and dedication have been infectious across KDH.”
KDH’s latest GHS results show moderate reductions in energy and water use and greenhouse gas emissions, along with a significant 17 percent increase in corporate commitment to environmental sustainability.
Energy reduction efforts included installing programmable thermostats throughout the hospital, replacing most light fixtures with LED bulbs, removing plug-in window air conditioning units, and replacing dated laundry machinery with energy efficient equipment. In addition, building automation capabilities, which maintain and regulate both temperature and humidity, have been upgraded to include the pharmacy and new administration areas.
Buehlow commented on the increase in KDH’s corporate commitment in this year’s GHS results. “Our score in this dimension is a reflection of our formal organization-wide commitments, as well as support and outreach with respect to energy, waste, water and special events,” she said.
“Support from the top down for our sustainability efforts has been essential,” she added. “The Green Hospital Scorecard evaluates our progress in environmental planning and target-setting in areas such as environmentally preferable purchasing and sustainable construction or renovation. We couldn’t have achieved the success we have without the support of our leadership for these kinds of decisions.”
“We’ve also found that getting buy-in from staff, physicians, volunteers, patients and visitors, has been hugely important,” said Buehlow. “For example, even their willingness to bring their own cups to fill up at the hospital coffee shop helps because it means less waste needs to be collected. Small wins like these make a big difference!”
KDH’s outreach efforts include a partnership struck with nearby Ecole catholique Sainte-Marguerite-Bourgeoys that sees the school’s students bringing messages of the importance of environmental sustainability to hospital staff and leading annual Earth Day events at KDH.
In the coming year the students will be helping to develop a Life Cycle Cost Analysis tool that could be used to evaluate potential KDH purchases in terms of the environmental impacts caused by the products throughout their life cycles.
In the GHS, KDH is measured against its small hospital peers, and has emerged as a leader. In 2018, in addition to achieving Silver status in the 2017 GHS, KDH was the proud recipient of two Ontario Green Health Care Awards in the small hospital category: the Green Hospital of the Year Award and the Waste Award. “Now,” said Buehlow, “other hospitals are looking to us for ideas to help them implement energy conservation initiatives in their organizations.”
Ken Waddington, Communications Director for the Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care, commented on KDH’s commitment to sustainability. “It’s awesome to see small hospitals like KDH being such tremendous stewards of our environment,” he said.
The last word goes to KDH’s Chief Executive Officer, Frank J. Vassallo, who said, “This is a great achievement and a testament to our hospital-wide commitment to make the best use of our resources, one of our five current strategic directions. It took everybody at KDH working together to make this happen so I offer my thanks and congratulations to the entire KDH organization.”
For further information contact:
Jenny Read, Communications Officer
T: 613-258-6133 extension 223