SOURCE: Healthier Hospitals Initiative

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February 20, 2014 14:15 ET

Massachusetts Hospital Association Becomes a Supporting Organization of the Healthier Hospitals Initiative

Promotes Green Stewardship in the Areas of Leaner Energy and Healthier Food Within the Healthcare System Across the State of Massachusetts

RESTON, VA--(Marketwired - February 20, 2014) - The Healthier Hospitals Initiative (HHI) announced today that the Massachusetts Hospital Association (MHA) has become a Supporting Organization of the Healthier Hospitals Initiative, a collaborative of leading healthcare institutions united to help speed the healthcare sector toward environmental sustainability. HHI is a coordinated, sector-wide approach based on the premise that how we design, build and operate hospitals can help achieve the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' (CMS') Triple Aim -- better care for individuals, improved health for populations, and reduced per capita costs.

HHI was launched by twelve hospital systems -- Advocate Health Care, Bon Secours Health System, Catholic Health Initiatives, Dignity Health, Gundersen Health System, Hospital Corporation of America (HCA), Inova Health System, Kaiser Permanente, MedStar Health, Partners HealthCare, Stanford University Medical Center, and Tenet Health Systems (including former Vanguard Health System) -- along with Practice Greenhealth, Health Care Without Harm and the Center for Health Design, in May 2010.

The leading hospital systems, Supporting Organizations and healthcare facilities work together to accelerate the widespread use of proven sustainability practices in six key "Challenge" areas:

  • Engaged Leadership
  • Healthier Food
  • Leaner Energy
  • Less Waste
  • Safer Chemicals
  • Smarter Purchasing

Each challenge consists of detailed metrics and an implementation plan, including case studies, fact sheets, how-to guides, webinars, a communications toolkit, and data submission guidance that can be adapted by hospitals of all sizes. Success is measured and tracked with aggregate data that can be sorted by state or hospital type-data that will be of great use for demonstrating success. 

MHA and HHI have partnered via the national Initiative to help Massachusetts hospitals statewide focus on two specific challenge areas: to reduce energy use and to purchase and serve locally sourced, healthier foods that have less impact on the environment. Supported by a grant from the John Merck Fund, Massachusetts hospitals will be provided with tools, educational resources, and technical assistance to help them meet the goals of the Leaner Energy and Healthier Food "Challenges."

"The Massachusetts Hospital Association's commitment to promoting healthy eating, active living and a greener work environment makes them an ideal supporter of HHI," said Gary Cohen, President of Health Care Without Harm and Founder of HHI. "To achieve widespread adoption, we must come together to demonstrate sustainability in healthcare is both a sound business decision and the right thing to do for improved public health and reduced environmental impact."

"Many Massachusetts hospitals already are working on various strategies to reduce their carbon footprint and focusing on healthy eating for their patients, workers, and communities," said MHA President and CEO Lynn Nicholas. "The HHI effort in Massachusetts will help coordinate these efforts through specific statewide goals, and help more hospitals lead their communities to a healthier future."

HHI Supporting Organizations support the goals of the Healthier Hospitals Initiative and seek opportunities to share information with organization members and associates. The green movement in healthcare is completely in concert with any organization's mission of improving the health and well-being of their community, and promoting effective stewardship of human and financial resources.

Learn more about the Healthier Hospitals Initiative at www.healthierhospitals.org.

About the Healthier Hospitals Initiative

The Healthier Hospitals Initiative (HHI) is a national campaign to implement a new approach to improving environmental health and sustainability in the healthcare sector. Led by 12 sponsoring health systems and three nonprofits, HHI challenges hospitals to reduce waste in six Challenge areas: Engaged Leadership, Healthier Food, Leaner Energy, Less Waste, Safer Chemicals and Smarter Purchasing. More information is available at www.healthierhospitals.org.

About the Massachusetts Hospital Association
The Massachusetts Hospital Association (MHA) is a voluntary, not-for-profit organization comprised of hospitals and health systems, related organizations, and other members with a common interest in promoting the good health of the people of the Commonwealth. Through leadership in public advocacy, education, and information, MHA represents and advocates for the collective interests of its members and supports their efforts to provide high quality, cost effective and accessible care.

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