The American Society for Healthcare Engineering (ASHE) has recognized several hospitals in its Energy Efficiency Challenge (E2C) program for reducing power consumption by 10 percent or more over a 12-month period.
The hospitals — which were recognized by ASHE on Earth Day April 22 — used various strategies to save energy. Many hospital energy-saving strategies are outlined on the recently expanded Sustainability Roadmap website at www.sustainabilityroadmap.org.
Several facilities previously have been recognized through the program for lowering energy consumption and were recognized again this spring for saving even more energy. The E2C program recognizes repeat winners that reduced energy consumption by an additional 5 percent or more.
"Hospitals across the country may face different energy challenges, depending on their location, age and other factors," says ASHE Executive Director Dale Woodin, CHFM, FASHE. "But the E2C program shows that health care facilities can significantly cut energy use regardless of their situation, and the first step is making a commitment to do so."
Among hospitals that cut energy use the most is a cluster of health care facilities in the Cincinnati area, including:
- Good Samaritan Hospital, Cincinnati, which reduced energy use by 30 percent;
- Bethesda North Hospital, Cincinnati, 25 percent;
- St. Elizabeth Edgewood (Ky.) Hospital, 25 percent.
Kenneth Knight, director of corporate facilities services, TriHealth, Cincinnati, credits an ongoing emphasis on education and training of facility staff, the application of Lean maintenance, and hiring energy consulting firm Pathian Inc., also of Cincinnati, to cut energy use at Good Samaritan and Bethesda.
"You can have the best equipment in the world, but if you don't have the staff trained in the ongoing operation and maintenance of the equipment, it will fall apart," he says. "A good program such as Lean maintenance is important to any ongoing maintenance program."
Lean maintenance eliminates efforts that add no value by freeing up time for efforts that do add value, he explains.
Matthew Greis, systems director of plant engineering, operations and maintenance, St. Elizabeth Healthcare, Edgewood, Ky., touts retrocommissioning and the use of Pathian to achieve the 25 percent energy-reduction at St. Elizabeth.
A list of E2C winners can be found at www.ashe.org/e2c/rec/awards.html.