New York may be heading into winter but things are looking pretty green here at MSK! Last month Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center was included in Becker’s Hospital Review list of the 50 Greenest Hospitals in America. We’re also a Practice Greenhealth Top 25 Environmental Excellence Award honoree for 2015 and a member of Practice Greenhealth’s Greening the OR, Healthy Food, Climate and Green Building Circles of Excellence. That’s a lot of honors!
We’ve all heard the the R’s of being green; Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle. Hospitals have a unique challenge to creating a sustainability program. Due to the nature of healthcare, there are a lot of items we just can’t reuse or recycle in order to do our part for the planet. Certain tools must be single use and some electronic devices need to be on 24 hours a day. We’ve had to find the places where we can make a changes without sacrificing our high quality services. MSK is increasing the efficiency of heating and lighting, serving local produce in the cafeteria, and reducing waste. Our new facilities are built with an eye on the LEED certification from the US Green Building Council. Here at the library we are working on revamping our printing system to reduce accidental and unwanted print jobs.
It’s not just all saving paper and serving local produce though, MSK, along with other New York area hospitals, donates usable medical supplies to the Afya Foundation. The Foundation distributes donated medical supplies to ongoing health initiative in 56 countries around the world. MSK volunteers regularly donate their time to help AFYA sort and consolidate the donated materials which are then shipped to those in need. MSK has donated over 40 tons of materials since 2013! That’s a huge amount of supplies going to good use instead of the landfill. It’s a win-win!