Making hospitals healthier: how to improve sustainability in healthcare facilities.

Link to article at PubMed

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Making hospitals healthier: how to improve sustainability in healthcare facilities.

Ann Ig. 2014 Sep-Oct;26(5):418-25

Authors: Buffoli M, Gola M, Rostagno M, Capolongo S, Nachiero D

BACKGROUND: Debate about sustainable development has reached a peak, as it is now recognized worldwide by public opinion and, in general, by governments' political agendas. New hospitals need to be made more sustainable and existing ones must improve their standards: e.g. in Italy, more than 50% of all healthcare facilities were built before the Nineties, without any attention to environmental, social or economic sustainability.
METHODS: Thanks to a sustainability evaluating system (environmental, social and economic) designed by the Milanese University 'Politecnico di Milano', two healthcare facilities were analyzed and compared. Both structures have approximately 600 beds and are located in the Lombardy region but they were built in different decades: one was built in the Sixties while the other one was built very recently. The analysis focused on underlining criticalities, implementing redevelopment measures for sustainability and eventually understanding whether attention was truly being given to those topics.
RESULTS: A need to evaluate the sustainability parameters emerged from the comparison between the two case-studies. This is the only way of identifying strategic non-invasive and cheaper solutions that could directly influence sustainability. Following the above-mentioned comparison, a first look - albeit not an adequate one - was given to sustainability aspects.
CONCLUSIONS: The assessment tool turned out to be efficient and could also prove effective in resource management and operational planning, whenever applied to any territorial facility.

PMID: 25405372 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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