Green Buckeye RN


Chicago Tribune: Meat With Antibiotics Off The Menu At Some Hospitals
July 21, 2010, 9:37 am
Filed under: Going Green at the Office, News

Concerned about drug-resistant pathogens, medical professionals push to limit antibiotic use in animal farming

8:11 a.m. CDT, July 20, 2010

The evening’s menu featured grass-fed, antibiotic-free beef over pasta, fresh seasonal vegetables and fresh organic peaches — items right at home in the city’s finest restaurants.

Instead, the dishes were prepared for visitors, staff and bed-bound patients at Swedish Covenant Hospital.

The Northwest Side hospital is one of 300 across the nation that have pledged to improve the quality and sustainability of the food they serve, not just for the health of their patients but, they say, the health of the environment and the U.S. population.

Read further at http://www.chicagotribune.com/health/ct-met-hospital-meat-20100718,0,5448653.story



NYT: In A World Of Throwaways-Making A Dent In Medical Waste
July 6, 2010, 11:12 am
Filed under: Going Green at the Office, News

The health care industry has a garbage problem.

It’s not just that hospitals, doctors’ offices, clinics and other health facilities generate several billion pounds of garbage each year: buried in that mountain of trash are untold numbers of unused disposable medical devices as well as used but recyclable supplies and equipment, from excess syringes and gauze to surgical instruments.

The problem, fueled by a shift toward the use of disposables that made it simple to keep treatment practices sterile, has been an open secret for years, but getting the health care industry to change its habits has not been easy. No organization currently tracks how much medical trash the United States produces — the last known estimate, from the early 1990s, was two million tons a year.

Find the article at http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/06/health/06waste.html?_r=1



OSHA Quicktakes: Employers Are Reminded to Post Injury and Illness Summaries
February 17, 2009, 11:09 am
Filed under: Going Green at the Office, News

On Feb. 1, employers were to begin posting a summary of the total number of job-related injuries and illnesses that occurred last year. Employers are only required to post the Summary (OSHA Form 300A) — not the OSHA 300 Log — from Feb. 1 to April 30, 2009. Copies of OSHA Forms 300, 300A and 301 are available on the OSHA Recordkeeping Web page at http://www.osha.gov/recordkeeping/index.html



Practice Greenhealth Develops Energy Impact Calculator for Health Facilities
February 10, 2009, 12:18 pm
Filed under: Going Green at the Office, Going Green in the Community, News

Tool Calculates Impact of Key Energy-Related Pollutants on Public Health

Practice Greenhealth has launched a new web-based tool to calculate the public health impact and costs of electricity consumed by health facilities in the United States generated from non-renewable fossil fuel.  The Healthcare Clean Energy Exchange Energy Impact Calculator (EIC) calculates sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, carbon dioxide, and mercury emissions based on kilowatt use by the facility and the fuel mix of the relevant power grid.  Applying peer-reviewed data provided by Environmental Protection Agency and other experts, the EIC then estimates the health impact and costs of health incidents such as premature death, chronic bronchitis, asthma attacks and hospital ER visits created by these emissions.

The EIC is available to all Practice Greenhealth members and is also available to the general public at http://www.eichealth.org/



Practice Greenhealth Announces Energy Impact Calculator for Health Facilities
January 29, 2009, 12:19 pm
Filed under: Going Green at the Office, News

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 28, 2009
Contacts:   Paul Lipke
   413-367-2878, plipke@ssne.org

   Nick DeDominicis
   860-395-5333, dedomn@practicegreenhealth.org

Practice Greenhealth Announces Energy Impact Calculator for Health Facilities
Tool Calculates Impact of Key Energy-Related Pollutants on Public Health
(Arlington, VA) Practice Greenhealth has launched a new web-based tool to calculate the public health impact and costs of electricity consumed by health facilities in the United States generated from non-renewable fossil fuel. The Healthcare Clean Energy Exchange Energy Impact Calculator (EIC) calculates sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxide (NOx), carbon dioxide (CO2) and mercury emissions based on kilowatt (kWh) use by the facility and the fuel mix of the relevant power grid. Applying peer-reviewed data provided by Environmental Protection Agency and other experts, the EIC then estimates the health impact and costs of health incidents such as premature death, chronic bronchitis, asthma attacks, and hospital ER visits created by these emissions.
“The data generated by the Energy Impact Calculator will help the health community quantify the link between energy and health, and thus elevate the importance of utilizing as much clean energy as possible to minimize public health impacts of their operations,” stated Bob Jarboe, executive director of Practice Greenhealth. “We hope it will also encourage utilities, federal and state governments to make more clean energy available at an affordable cost to health facilities.”
Using the EIC, a typical 200-bed hospital in the coal-powered Midwest using a 7 million kWh year can learn that it is responsible for over $1 million/year in negative societal public health impacts ($0.14/kWh), and $107,000/year ($0.01532/kWh) in direct health care costs. By comparison, most health facilities in the region are paying utilities about $0.06 per kWh. They may be negotiating with suppliers to save fractions of a penny for coal-driven electricity with one hand, while they and society are paying many times that to deal with the health impact of that same purchase.
In addition to the health impacts, the EIC calculates the healthcare facilities’ dollar costs for treating them, and their external societal costs. “As the pressure for institutional transparency increases, decision-makers can see conventional or “brown” energy may not be the best deal, especially if they include not only direct costs, but health care costs, community benefits, reputation in the community, senior management and trustee fiduciary responsibility, liability, climate change risk, and other costs,” said Paul Lipke, Senior Advisor, Energy and Buildings, Health Care Without Harm/Practice Greenhealth who led the creation of the EIC.
Practice Greenhealth, along with corporate sponsor Premier, Inc, offers a clean energy purchasing program, the Healthcare Clean Energy Exchange (HCEE), for Practice Greenhealth members and Premier customers. HCEE users benefit from reverse auctions, in which energy providers compete to supply health care facility’s energy needs with renewable and traditional energy at the best possible price. “The Energy Impact Calculator was designed to enable health care energy purchasers to make business decisions on energy efficiency projects and renewable energy purchases based on a fuller understanding of their true costs,” stated Nick DeDominicis, director of Practice Greenhealth’s HCEE.
The characteristics of the power grid where a health facility is located is an important component of the calculations. The amount of emissions, particulate matter and contribution to greenhouse gases depends on the types of fuel used to run electric power stations. When it comes to emissions, coal is the “dirtiest,” followed by fuel oil, natural gas, nuclear, and renewable sources. Coal region power grids are up to 21 times dirtier than the cleanest of the others. Electric power generated from renewable sources, such as wind and solar, have zero emissions.
Increasing use of clean power by healthcare facilities not only protects the public health, it creates and sustains green jobs and supports the financing and construction of new clean energy generation. Health care in the US consumes some 73 trillion kWh annually, second only to food services.
The Practice Greenhealth EIC is available free of charge on the Practice Greenhealth website www.practicegreenhealth.org/EIC.



OSHA QuickTakes: Final Rule Issued On Employers’ Duty To Provide And Train Employees
January 20, 2009, 1:34 pm
Filed under: Going Green at the Office, News

OSHA issued a final rule on Clarification of Employers’ Duty to Provide Personal Protective Equipment and Train Each Employee. The rule revises OSHA standards to clarify that, for employers to be in compliance, they must provide personal protective equipment (PPE) and hazards training for each employee covered by the standards. More information is available in the Dec. 12 Federal Register at http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=FEDERAL_REGISTER&p_id=21370.



Healthcare Design: Nurses Organize Around the Planning Table
November 14, 2008, 11:16 am
Filed under: Going Green at the Office, News

 The Nursing Institute for Healthcare Design was created to inspire and educate nurse leaders about their roles in design and construction
by John Oberlin, Online Editor 

After attending the HEALTHCARE DESIGN.05 conference in Scottsdale, Arizona, a small group of registered nurses was inspired to address a knowledge gap it found among nurses who are increasingly being invited to the planning table. Since then, the Nursing Institute for Healthcare Design (NIHD) has been helping to educate and inspire nurse leaders in their role in healthcare design and construction. Online Editor John Oberlin discusses NIHD’s mission and goals with the director of operations, Laura Hayes RN, BSN, MBA.

 Read further at http://www.healthcaredesignmagazine.com/ME2/dirmod.asp?sid=&nm=&type=Publishing&mod=Publications%3A%3AArticle&mid=8F3A7027421841978F18BE895F87F791&tier=4&id=842B4BCD8F154B6A8EA17A6D34167D06