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SJHH / Quality & Performance/ External Review & Corporate Information/ Environmental Sustainability

Environmental Sustainability

Environmental Sustainability & Healthcare  

As a healthcare organization, we know that we need a healthy planet for healthy people. This knowledge inspires a key question: Does the Hippocratic Oath to “Frist do no harm” extend beyond those we serve, and into their communities and the environment?

In the early days of environmental activism, concerns focused on the impacts of human action on the environment. Today, the conversation has shifted and now environmental activists focus on how the environment impacts us as humans. It’s not as simple as just reducing the environmental risk we pose as humans; it’s also about how we manage the risk of an unstable environment on our own lives.

The human health risks posed by declining climate stability and resource scarcity could not be more real in light of the United Nation’s (UN) declaration that 2014 was globally the warmest year on record. Recognizing the direct health impacts of climate change, the World Health Organization (WHO) has been working in partnership with World Meteorological Organization (WMO) since 2008 to advocate, educate and implement programs that mitigate the impacts of climate change on health. The WHO declares that healthcare professionals have the “responsibility, political leverage and necessary skills to protect the public from climate related threats to health” (Protecting Health from Climate Change, 2008).

Our Environmental Sustainability Performance 

 

Managing environmental performance sustainably means creating plans, products or programs that are balanced environmentally, socially and economically. When guided by strong leadership, a shared focus on each Environment, Society and Economy will create a sustainable outcome. When we look at sustainability from this perspective, we come to understand that no environmental, social or economic decision can be made without directly considering the impact of said decision on human health. By approaching decision making as such, the opportunity with the most balanced and positive environmental, social and economic return on investment can be achieved.

Sustainability Aspect

Objective Description

Waste Management

The very nature of our work means that we create waste and often times this waste is created in abundance. Yet, as a huge global polluter, solid waste is responsible for many current health ailments. As a guiding aspect of our sustainability program, we are motivated to find ways to better manage and reduce waste so to improve our environment and our community’s health.

Care & Community Capacity

A sustainable hospital cannot exist within a care-less community. By supporting sustainable development within our community, leveraging relationships with stakeholders and building upon shared values, we will help our community build capacity supportive of short and long-term health.

Resource Management

Resource management and conservation are important aspects in our journey towards sustainability. We know that managing our resources will help us simultaneously curb our environmental impact, contribute to fiscal responsibility and ensure resource availability to future generations.

Education & Engagement

Educating and engaging with staff, colleagues, leadership and the public means building a culture that supports environmental sustainability. This supportive culture is vital to propelling initiatives forward as well as breaking down barriers between administrative and grassroots stakeholders.

The ECO Program, St. Joe's Green Team, is committed to making a roadmap to environmental sustainability that achieves our desired outcomes. The actions we will take on our journey will be categorized under the following aspects of our ECO Program.