HCWH Global Newsletter | December 2017

Reflections on a Successful 2017

As 2017 draws to a close, HCWH can celebrate a few exciting milestones. Our Global Green and Healthy Hospitals Network, which we launched only six years ago, now has more than 950 institutional members who represent the interests of over 32,500 hospitals and health centers in 50 countries. As we collaborate with hospitals and health systems around the world to help them reduce their environmental footprint and become "climate-smart," we are also building on and strengthening partnerships with the United Nations Development Programme, the World Health Organization and the World Bank. Meanwhile, our partners and members on every continent are engaging and advocating for environmental health and healthy communities.   
We have accomplished much in the past year, and for that matter, in the past two decades. As we move into 2018 we look forward to continuing to work with all of you for a better, more just, more environmentally sustainable and healthier world.   
Happy holidays and happy New Year to all,
Josh Karliner 
For the HCWH team

Health Care Worldwide Calls for Action on Climate Change


Bonn, Germany— In November at the COP23 climate negotiations in Bonn, Germany, leading hospitals and health systems around the world issued a Call to Action for the health sector to play a leadership role in tackling climate change.

HCWH delivered the Call to Action to the World Health Organization's Director General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, during a high-level event on climate and health at COP23. "The health impacts of climate change and the health benefits of climate action are becoming increasingly clear,” said Director General Tedros. "Health care, with its hospitals on the front lines, must be part of the solution."

Organized by HCWH and its Global Green and Healthy Hospitals Network, 137 institutions from 33 countries, representing the interests of more than 10,000 hospitals and health centers endorsed Health Care Call to Action on Climate Change.

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GGHH Policy Director and Members Win "100 Most Influential People in Healthcare" Award

Scott Slotterback, Policy Director for Global Green and Healthy Hospitals (GGHH), a program of Health Care Without Harm, and four sustainability leaders from GGHH members were among the ten winners in the Sustainability Category of the 2017 "100 Most Influential People in Healthcare" Award.

The GGHH member representatives include: Ahmed Idhammad (Head of Sustainable Development, Mohammed VI University Hospital of Marrakesh, Morocco), Gustav Eriksson (Head of Environmental Department at Karolinska University Hospital, Sweden), Sonia Roschnik (Sustainable Health Advisor, Previous Head of Unit to the NHS England SDU, United Kingdom) and Douwe Kiestra, President, International Federation of Hospital Engineering). In addition, Jon Utech, (Director of the Office for a Healthy Environment at the Cleveland Clinic, USA), a member of GGHH’s partner program Practice Greenhealth also won the award.

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Asia | Hospitals Tackle Climate Change at Green Hospitals Asia Conference

The 4th Green Hospitals Asia Conference took place in Taipei, Taiwan on 20-21 October 2017. Over 300 participants gathered from around Asia and beyond to discuss and exchange strategies and approaches for the health sector to address climate change and its destructive health and environmental impacts.

The two-day conference provided participants with a view into the latest research and knowledge on climate-smart health care and opportunities for its implementation at their facilities.

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Pediatricians from Argentina Advise on How Children Can live in a Healthier World

HCWH Latin America launched a series of videos in Spanish with recommendations for parents on environmental health for their children, featuring pediatricians from recognized institutions in Argentina.

These videos are part of the initiative Baby Steps for a Healthy World (Pequeños cuidados para un mundo saludable). They aim to provide families with advice on how they can create safe, health environments in which their children can grow.

Watch the videos and read more 

Regional Resilience Summit in Cleveland a Success

The City of Cleveland, Cleveland Clinic, and HCWH recently partnered to host a summit focused on the role of health care in building climate resilience in the region.

The Nov. 17 summit brought together stakeholders from across the community, including health care, city government, planning agencies, academia, public health, and nonprofit organizations, to share different perspectives, discuss climate risk and preparedness, and build a network of individuals and organizations committed to working together for a healthy and resilient community. Findings from the day will be integrated into the update of Cleveland’s Climate Action Plan, which is currently underway.

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HCWH Launches New Project to Measure GHG Emissions from European Hospitals

With financial support from the German development agency GIZ, HCWH Europe recently launched a pilot project to support six European hospitals in measuring their carbon footprint, including greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the use of anaesthetic gases. During the project, which will run until March 2018, HCWH Europe will work with hospitals from France, Germany, Poland, Portugal, Spain, and Sweden to measure emissions and share data.

In order for the EU to meet its 2030 climate and energy package targets, countries must set national goals for different economic sectors. While healthcare makes up an estimated 5% of European GHG emissions, very few health systems have measured their carbon footprint or set emission reduction targets.

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Australia | Climate and Health Alliance Wins 2017 Public Health Awards

The Climate and Health Alliance (CAHA), HCWH's strategic partner in Australia, took home several awards from the Public Health Association of Australia (PHAA) this past October in Sydney. Four out of seven awards went to people involved with CAHA.

"The recipients of this year’s awards have excelled in diverse and important ways, such as through mentoring students, leading innovative solutions to public health issues, or highlighting environmental health as a critical issue affecting human health", said David Templeman, President of the PHAA.

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