Posts Tagged ‘hospital sustainability’

Dirt Does Good: From Construction Site to Soccer Field

Emory Sustainable ConstructionAs you can imagine, digging space for a nine-level, 450,000-square-foot building with 500 underground parking spaces kicks up a lot of dirt! To continue all sustainability efforts with the new bed tower construction on Clifton Campus, the construction team set a goal to find another organization that could use the dirt that was displaced during the site expansion. As luck would have it, they found a most deserving recipient!

Multiple dump trucks hauled 78,000 cubic yards of dirt and filling material from the Emory University Hospital expansion site to Clarkston, GA. The dirt will be used to construct a soccer field at the Fugees Academy, the nation’s only school dedicated to refugee education. Fugees Family, Inc., is a non-profit organization devoted to working with child survivors of war. The organization’s efforts include year-round soccer for 90 boys and girls ages 10-18, after-school tutoring, soccer for 50 elementary-aged students, an academic enrichment summer camp and the Fugees Academy.

A.L. Grading Contractors, Inc., imported and placed the dirt at the site, while Breedlove Land Planning provided engineering services, which together would have cost more than $1 million. In the spirit of assisting Fugees Family in its philanthropic endeavor of providing recreational and learning opportunities for the refugee children residing in the Clarkston area, A.L. Grading’s lump sum fee was just $1.00.

Stay up to date on construction updates at emoryhealthcare.org/expansion!

Emory Healthcare Makes Strides in Going Green

sustainabilityAccording to Practice Greenhealth, the premier US organization for healthcare sustainability, hospitals in the US produce almost 6 billion tons of waste annually, or 33 pounds per bed per day. So, how does a large academic medical system like Emory Healthcare tackle the challenge of going green? Here are just a few ways we’re working toward our goal:

  • By 2015, Emory Healthcare and Emory University aim to divert landfill waste by 65 percent through sophisticated recycling and composting programs, starting in the operating rooms (ORs) and other patient care areas. Emory University Hospital Midtown kicked off the recycling program in May, with Emory University Hospital joining the program during the summer. Medical technology company Stryker has placed bins in every operating room to collect used medical equipment. Equipment being collected includes laparoscopic devices, arthroscopic/orthopaedic devices (at EUHM) and energy devices. Those devices will be taken to a facility in Florida for recycling. Stericycle, a medical and hazardous waste company, will collect all clean plastic containers, clean plastic wrap, and clean cardboard boxes, many of which package surgical and sterile medical equipment, for recycling. Stericycle has also partnered with EUHM’s Environmental Services team to collect recyclable plastic, aluminum, glass, and paper from common spaces such as waiting rooms, lobbies and administrative spaces. Educational efforts on what to recycle and what to place in regulated medical waste bins are ongoing.
  • Since 2007, Emory Healthcare has partnered with MedShare, an international, non-profit organization that sends surplus medical supplies to underserved hospitals and clinics. Emory Healthcare donates unused, unexpired supplies to MedShare, as well as equipment that is no longer in use. Emory Healthcare collected 159,000 pounds of supplies for MedShare in 2012 alone.
  • Emory Johns Creek Hospital is working with Stryker to collect used surgical equipment for recycling.
  • At Emory Saint Joseph’s Hospital, medical waste reduction is accomplished with the help of a machine called a Chem Clav, which sterilizes and converts medical waste to landfill waste. Emory Saint Joseph’s Hospital is the only hospital within the Emory Healthcare system to have its own waste conversion system on site. This technology has been used at the hospital for 18 years.
  • Emory University Hospital Midtown and Emory University Hospital have joined the Healthier Hospitals Initiative’s Less Waste Challenge, a challenge to reduce regulated medical waste, increase recycling rates and increase construction and demolition waste recycling. These two hospitals join dozens of others across the country to “green” their operations. Healthier Hospitals Initiatives is a program developed out of collaboration between 12 of the nation’s largest and most influential health systems and Health Care Without Harm, the Center for Health Design and Practice Greenhealth.

Celebrating Earth Day!

Earth Day 2014Since 1970, Americans have recognized April 22 as Earth Day. In honor of this celebration of our amazing planet, we thought we’d fill you in on how we’re keeping the environment top of mind as we expand and renovate Emory University Hospital.

  • In keeping with Emory’s “No Net Loss of Forest Canopy” Policy, we planted 133 trees on campus to replace the trees lost in preparing the footprint of the new building. Emory Healthcare committed to replant the removed trees in new locations across the Clifton Campus. Any trees that could not be replanted will be recycled, and the reclaimed wood will be incorporated into new construction.
  • Emory Healthcare partnered with the Lifecycle Building Center to recover building materials such as hand railings, bathroom plumbing fixtures, signage, kitchen cabinets, doors and windows from previously existing buildings on the site for reuse in other local projects.
  • Implementing a Clean Construction Policy, Emory Healthcare has asked its building contractors to adhere to the strictest construction equipment pollution controls possible in order to reduce the emissions of smog-forming pollutants that are hazardous to human health and the environment.
  • The newly renovated Woodruff Circle shuttle area, the drop-off area near the Woodruff Health Sciences Center Administration Building and the expanded valet area near Emory University Hospital all have bioswales incorporated into their physical redesign. Bioswales are used to naturally treat and disperse runoff water flowing from surfaces such as asphalt. Water drains through the bioswale and into Dekalb County’s stormwater pipes. What comes out of the pipes and into our community creeks is cleaner and slower, reducing contamination and the effects of erosion and flooding.

How will you and your family be recognizing Earth Day this year?