Green Buckeye RN


JustMeans: AHA Releases Sustainability Roadmap for Hospitals Web Site
January 5, 2011, 1:27 pm
Filed under: News

Posted on: December 23, 2010

This week, the American Hospital Association released its Sustainability Roadmap for Hospitals web site, www.sustainabilityroadmap.org. Creating a website which can be useful for experienced organizations and those just getting started on their sustainability journey is an ambitious undertaking, yet one that the AHA does a fair job of delivering. In fact, in their effort to be useful and applicable across the diversity of their membership, the AHA has created a resource that is useful and applicable to most organizations of any kind.

The website begins with “Topics” and “Drivers”, which establish the philosophies and problems of sustainability. If you have read more than one book on sustainability this will be mostly repeat content for you. The next section – “Strategies” – is the real roadmap. (And while “Topics – Drivers – Strategies – Implementation” creates a neatly organized navigation banner, they could have saved me some time and grouped the “Strategies” section with the “Implementation” section and titled it: “The Roadmap”.)

Their roadmap approach begins with building teams, getting leadership support and planning the journey and then moves in to tactical phases including financing, target setting and project management. At each step, the Roadmap provides terrific detail and advice. For example, under team building, the roadmap describes the composition and duties of an executive team, a management team, and the roles and responsibilities of department representatives. The roadmap then describes various solutions which have been used to achieve performance improvements, such as applying low-E film to underperforming glazing or inspecting and repairing steam traps. Some of the more interesting features, such as the Financial Models for Implementing Sustainability Solutions are still “coming soon”, but others, such as the Basic Business Case Template (a very handy excel spreadsheet:http://www.sustainabilityroadmap.org/strategies/excel/RoadmapBusinessCaseTemplate.xlsx) are ready to go.

This is a monumental achievement for the AHA and a terrific resource for anyone looking to drive sustainability at their organization. Its upside – the holistic scope of the Roadmap – is its only downside: for anyone just starting out, the Roadmap may be overwhelming. It also does a poor job of helping the reader – presumably a sustainability manager – identify where their organization is and what its next steps are. In this sense, it is less like a true roadmap – which helps you get from point A to point B – and more of an encyclopedia. That said, if you have a team in place, have wrestled with your organizational priorities and have an idea of where you’re headed, this Roadmap will be an invaluable resource.

Our advice: Go ahead and bookmark it in your browser now —http://www.sustainabilityroadmap.org.

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