A2 – Clinical Sustainability: What is it and How Do We Achieve it?

Music Row 5

Pollution is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality, globally responsible for 9 million premature deaths annually. While the health care sector is itself a major emitter of environmental pollutants, many examples have shown that reducing pollution can improve both public health and the triple bottom line of the health service sector. Many examples exist for sustainable practices in building design, food services, and energy sourcing, but there are unique challenges when approaching sustainability in clinical care areas. Frequently, focusing exclusively on the patients in front of us prevents us from considering downstream health effects on the community or population at large. Overcoming this difficulty is critically important when discussing clinical practices with clinicians. This session will critically review existing research and case studies on clinical sustainability projects. The session will examine the tools used to quantify and monitor environmental emissions, and provide resources for education, training, and capacity-building in the participant’s home institution. Together, participants in this session will identify a strategic research agenda to aid policy makers, clinicians, and health administrators to deliver more environmentally sustainable clinical care. Finally, we will touch on the challenge of integrating clinicians with other institutional leaders to implement changes collaboratively.

Clinical advocacy Sustainable procurement