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Maryland Health Care Facilities Recognized for Environmental Leadership

Friday, June 06, 2014

Baltimore, Md. – Four Maryland hospitals were recently deemed “Trailblazers,” honored for their environmental sustainability achievements by Maryland Hospitals for a Healthy Environment (MD H2E). MD H2E bestows its annual Trailblazer Award to hospitals that have led the way toward environmental sustainability. The winners are strong models for other hospitals, reducing their environmental footprint and raising the bar on improved results.

Joan Plisko, technical director of MD H2E, presented the hospitals with the awards at the Maryland Hospital Association annual dinner, Wednesday June 4th, at the Four Seasons Baltimore. The 2013 winners are: 

Greater Baltimore Medical Center (GBMC) implemented a variety of energy conservation programs—all while reducing costs, electrical and natural gas usage and associated environmental footprint. Their comprehensive energy savings program will provide an annual savings of $110,000 with an additional $90,000 from BGE rebates. GBMC also employed “Low Unit of Measure” into the hospital procurement process as a way to reduce waste and cost, and improve efficiency. GBMC reduced fuel usage by more than 10,000 gallons, saving $3,000 and reducing CO2 emissions by more than 91 metric tons, annually. The project saves more than $153,000 annually.

Medstar Franklin Square Medical Center (MFSMC) took a multi-pronged approach to “green” cleaning by integrating new technologies and procedures to reduce the hospital’s environmental footprint, save money, and enhance quality. The program included a new backpack floor finishing system, procurement and usage of chemical-free floor stripping, implementation of reusable microfiber mops, third party certified green cleaning products, and the Xenex disinfecting robot. MFSMC reduced water consumption by 65,000 gallons annually by switching to reusable mops. The entire project will save
over $200,000 annually.

University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC) increased the health and nutrient value of the food and beverages offered in the hospital cafe by utilizing smart purchasing practices, grounded in the tenets of environmental stewardship. UMMC implemented pricing incentive programs for healthy foods, altered recipes to include fresh and local ingredients, installed a refillable water infusion station, and planted an onsite herb garden. Results included an 8 percent reduction in meat purchasing, a 23 percent increase in overall healthy food purchases, and a 34 percent reduction in sugar sweetened
beverages offered.

University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Medical Center (UCMC) is the first hospital in Maryland to qualify for the EmPower Maryland Incentive, and will receive nearly $2 million for the construction and operation of a Combined Heat and Power (CHP) system. The CHP will provide electricity, heating, and cooling to the Bel Air campus—with no upfront costs to the hospital—while achieving greater efficiency, providing electricity for UCMC's base load, and supply a thermal base load for both steam and chilled water. The hospital will save nearly $9 million over the system's expected service life, which will
also provide backup power to ensure the hospital can operate during an emergency or natural disaster. The CHP system will reduce CO2 emissions by more than 40%--the equivalent of permanently removing 2,200 cars from the roads.

These hospitals will be sharing their success stories and lessons learned at the MD H2E Trailblazer Event, scheduled for October 30th, 2014 at GBMC.

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MD H2E is a grant funded initiative of the University of Maryland School of Medicine and strives to create a culture of environmental health and sustainability in Maryland’s health care community. Since 2005, MD H2E has provided technical assistance, education, networking, and recognition for Maryland’s health care providers. www.mdh2e.org

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