Bologna Workshop on Sustainability in the Healthcare Sector

Health Care Without Harm (HCWH) Europe co-hosted a workshop in Bologna, Italy on 'Sustainability in the Healthcare Sector: Public Procurement, Energy and Mobility in the Italian Health System and Beyond'. This took place on Friday 7 November 2014 and was organised by our partner the Health Service of the Emilia-Romagna Region (Servizio Sanitario Regionale Emilia-Romagna). 

Over 15 speakers gave presentations on the work of their organisations in implementing sustainable solutions in healthcare settings. The morning sessions were devoted to sharing European experiences. The afternoon session then focused on Italian local and regional experiences. Presentations are available to view on our website.

Presenting HCWH's work to an Italian audience

HCWH Europe's Executive Director Anja Leetz presented our work to the largely Italian audience as a speaker at the session on European experiences. Attendees heard about all aspects of HCWH Europe's campaign, from our beginnings as opponents of mercury to our current work on climate change, pharmaceuticals, safer chemicals, sustainable procurement and more. The audience also learned about the Global Green and Healthy Hospitals Network and its new social platform, GGHH Connect.

This was a great opportunity to spread the word about our campaign for environmentally responsible healthcare in a country where we do not currently have many active members. We certainly hope to welcome new Italian members in the future and support them in their mission to achieve sustainable change in healthcare.

Above: Anja Leetz speaks about HCWH Europe's driving commitment to the promotion of sustainable healthcare.

Spreading the word about EcoQUIP

The workshop also proved to be an ideal venue in which to discuss the EcoQUIP project, which was presented by Prof. Simona Agger. This encourages innovation in procurement as a means to improve the efficiency, quality and environmental sustainability of the healthcare sector.

The audience also heard about various models of best practice such as the fully automated bedwashing facility at Erasmus University Hospital in the Netherlands. This was developed under EcoQuip as a means to help the hospital reduce its energy use and overall carbon footprint.

 Above: Prof. Simona Agger discusses EcoQUIP's ongoing work to promote innovation in public procurement.

Inspiration from across Europe

The workshop proved to be an excellent opportunity to learn about sustainability projects underway across Europe. Overall, the event provided proof that environmental sustainability can go hand in hand with social and economic considerations.

With HCWH Europe's members from five different countries in attendance, in addition to three of our board members, we were pleased to use this opportunity to connect with our healthcare counterparts in Italy and share news about our work in this area. 

We would like to congratulate the Emilia Romagna Region for a successful workshop. We would also like to thank all the speakers for sharing their experiences and providing inspiration for us all as we continue to work towards our goal of making healthcare more environmentally sustainable.

  Above (left-right): Hanns Moshammer (HCWH Europe Board Chairman); Anja Leetz (HCWH Europe Executive Director); and Davide Sgarzi (Servizio Sanitario Regionale Emilia-Romagna & HCWH Europe Board Member). 

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