Reducing Carbon Emissions in Healthcare Buildings

Tips to Reduce Carbon Emissions for Healthcare Buildings

Tips to Reduce Carbon Emissions for Healthcare Buildings

We live on a planet where the balance of planetary health depends on a fine balance of environmental ingredients. Extensive use of resources increases the carbon footprint on the environment. It may be ironic – but the sectors that work to improve human health also affect planetary fitness adversely. 

Processes to minimize carbon footprint becoming increasingly important. At the Cotocon Group, we can offer assistance and tips to ensure your healthcare establishment generates the least possible carbon emissions. 

The statistical results

Carbon emissions affect the environment directly and can often cause climate change events. Apart from affecting physical and mental health, floods, hurricanes, wildfires, and rising temperatures disturb vulnerable communities. 

The global emissions from healthcare account for as much as 4.6 percent; however, the US healthcare contribution stands at a much higher rate, closer to 8.5 percent. 

Experts predict that worldwide emissions from healthcare will reach 6 gigatons yearly by 2050, similar to emissions from approximately 1.26 billion cars. The results are enough to consider seriously reducing carbon emissions for healthcare buildings.

Sources of carbon footprints in healthcare industries

A healthcare center or associated establishments need heating, cooling, ventilation, and hot water – all energy-intensive and cause Carbon Emissions forHealthcare Buildings. Our expert report puts up a thought-provoking picture:

  1. The yearly energy consumption for cooling in healthcare buildings is equivalent to the discharges of 110 coal mines. However, the maximum parts of energy consumption occur through the supply chain. 
  2. Every year, drug waste because of inappropriate packaging for single patients costs billions of dollars. 
  3. The development, transport, ingestion, and clearance of products and services results in a projected 60 to 70 percent of the healthcare region’s global energy footprint.

At the Cotocon group, we have expert consultants who can offer sound advice on reducing your healthcare center’s carbon load. 

The possible way outs

Until science discovers a way to use energy resources without generating carbon waste, the only way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions lies in how we use them. One of these ways is changing the healthcare building’s operation, employee transport, waste management, and several other factors. At The Cotocon Group, we generally offer the following solutions in our emission-reducing efforts:

Decreasing discharges through avoidance

The environmental sector experts advocate preventing service needs rather than redesigning. This process reduces emissions significantly more than creating a whole new service module. The concept entails creating an environment where public health remains optimum, and the requirement for healthcare ideally becomes zero. 

We offer extensive and fitting assistance in creating effective measures like public health and prevention initiatives. These are increasing physical activity in the community members, providing more green spaces, and encouraging an improved diet to reduce the infection rate of non-communicable diseases. This feature additionally delivers climate benefits like reduced air pollution, carbon discharges, and toxic exposures. 

Presently, some healthcare establishments are using their resources and managing their trade practices to facilitate the improvement of local health outcomes. Their contributions can work as “anchors” and help better the environment by encouraging others to follow their example. 

Reforming the distribution system 

Redesigning efforts to reduce the carbon footprint a healthcare setting improves outcomes and reduces costs. Some of the strategies we can implement for our clients are mentioned below:

Growing use of digital and telehealth tools

Patients or healthcare seekers must travel to reach the health center, contributing to the carbon emission percentage. Using digital and telehealth tools offers patients more flexible options on the methods and time they can access services and lessens the emissions from travel. Remote monitoring through digital tools can improve care continuity and prompt cautioning of escalation, which can prevent possible hospitalizations in the future. 

The remote monitoring efforts of NHS Virtual Wards through digital tools for home-living patients have reduced carbon emissions and costs. 

Reducing the distance between patients and healthcare center

Primary or community-setting healthcare centers that provide closer-to-home healthcare deliver low-cost care, improve patient outcomes and experiences, and reduce energy emissions from the most energy-intensive buildings like hospitals. 

Changing to treatment methods with lower emissions

The development of medical science and technologies has created several new-age methods that deliver the same results and help in reducing carbon footprint

Different medical treatments and procedures generate varied amounts of greenhouse gasses. State-of-the-art techniques like robot-assisted surgery can improve patient outcomes and lengths of stay at the hospital but may cause a significant carbon footprint. 

In 2015, a study undertaken to measure the four known surgical tactics for hysterectomy demonstrated that the robot-assisted approach caused the highest environmental effect and increased costs than vaginal, laparoscopic, and abdominal approaches. 

Primary finding and identification

The early diagnosis or detection of diseases helps lower greenhouse gas emissions by decreasing carbon-intensive care requirements in the future. Effective and continuing management for long-term conditions, secondary prevention of diseases, and reduction of emissions. 

Definite and appropriate use of care

The Carbon Emissions for Healthcare Buildings can be reduced if the patients get appropriate and useful care by reducing overtreatment and unnecessary care. In the US, Medicare overuse may reach as high as 29% of the total spending because of an estimated 66% of prescribed medications going unused. The systems get burdened with costs over USD 2.4 billion per year.  

Long-term and routine management

Patients who practice long-term care management can reduce complications and result in lessened complex treatments and associated emissions in the future. For instance, diabetic people managing their blood sugar levels through glucose-reducing treatments generate less greenhouse gases than those with untreated diabetes. 

Several healthcare industry proprietors may ignore the need to give attention to the environmental need due to cost increases. However, as an experienced consulting agency, we can assure you it’s far lower than the non-compliance fees or the burden it puts on the atmosphere. 


Why should we reduce energy consumption in healthcare sectors?

Although the energy used in the healthcare sector saves people’s lives, the resources that generate this power are the same as a consumer industry factory. Therefore, reducing carbon emissions from hospitals and other buildings is equally necessary. 

How much does it cost to make environmentally friendly establishments?

The cost of establishing a new building will depend on the size, area, and materials. However, the cost to retrofit old buildings to make them environment-friendly will differ according to the requirements.  

Does it help to hire expert agencies? 

Several federal structures are now implementing laws to reduce their carbon footprintAs ignoring these rules would result in high non-compliance fines and other aspects, involving expert agencies like the Cotocon group will help immensely.