Many tools and resources for improving sustainability in health care facilities are available through the American Society for Health Care Engineering (ASHE) and its Energy to Care program.
Energy to Care gives health care facilities professionals access to a wealth of information about how to assess, track and reduce energy consumption in their buildings.
The new Energy to Care Sustainability Guidebook and Checklist walks facilities managers through all stages of program planning and implementation. It outlines the steps involved in creating a successful sustainability program, including the development of energy policies, sustainability plans, green teams, measurement and verification protocols, and communications strategies.
The Energy to Care Dashboard is a quick and easy tool for benchmarking, monitoring energy usage and analyzing progress over time.
“ASHE developed the Energy to Care Dashboard tool to provide an at-a-glance view of facilities’ energy use,” says Kara Brooks, LEED AP BD+C, sustainability program manager at ASHE. “The dashboard includes a portfolio ranking analysis view so that systems of all sizes can view their portfolio of facilities and compare their energy performance.”
The program’s energy conservation measures (ECMs) are how-to guides about schedule, control and repair measures that health care facilities can implement to maximize sustainability. “The ECMs outline the many ways facilities managers can easily integrate sustainability practices into their facilities,” Brooks says.
Energy to Care Treasure Hunts are another feature of the program that provide significant and long-term environmental and cost-savings benefits.
ASHE coordinates the preparation, participant training and logistics of the multi-day events, which bring in skilled teams of experts to take an in-depth look at a facility. The most recent treasure hunt at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore identified more than $2 million of no-cost and low-cost energy-savings opportunities.
“The Energy to Care website is available to anyone interested in reducing energy consumption, providing value to their organization and improving patient care,” Brooks says. “We encourage facilities managers in systems large and small to take advantage of these easy-to-use tools, video tutorials and detailed ECMs, compiled in one place to ensure that you get the most value out of the program.”
To learn more, readers can visit the Energy to Care website.