Media Advisory: White House Event to Address Healthier Hospitals Initiative’s Progress on Reducing Cost and Improving Environmental Sustainability in Hospitals

Media Advisory

For Immediate Release: July 23, 2012

Contact:           Lauren Smith
                        (202) 591-4065

White House Event to Address Healthier Hospitals Initiative’s Progress on Reducing Cost and Improving Environmental Sustainability in Hospitals

What:  The White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) will host top Administration officials, hospital administrators and policy experts for a discussion, “Greening America’s Hospitals,” highlighting the Healthier Hospitals Initiative’s (HHI) role in improving hospitals’ operations and business models by adopting sustainability initiatives.  Two panel discussions, “Fostering a Culture of Environmental Sustainability” and “Healthier Hospitals Initiative: Transforming the Supply Chain,” will address the benefits of increasing sustainability efforts in hospitals and spotlight the linkages between environmental sustainability and economic profitability, from saving thousands on energy, waste, and water bills to creating a safer and healthier atmosphere for patients and hospital employees.

Why:   Hospitals have enormous potential for incorporating innovative and efficient design into their business models.  HHI is helping hospitals achieve lower costs and better patient care by challenging them to improve operations in six areas:

  •     Engaged Leadership Challenge: engage in leadership on environmental health and sustainability
  •     Healthier Food Challenge: serve healthier foods and beverages
  •     Leaner Energy Challenge: reduce energy use
  •     Less Waste Challenge: reduce waste and recycle
  •     Safer Chemicals Challenge: use safer chemicals
  •     Smarter Purchasing Challenge: purchase environmentally preferable products

As a result of these efforts, more than 500 hospitals have taken steps to improve the environment in which people live, work and receive care.

Who:   Senior Administration officials from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the White House Council on Environmental Quality, and the Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Challenge will be in attendance.

Key panelists include:

  •     Gary Cohen, President, Health Care Without Harm, and Founder, Healthier Hospitals Initiative
  •     Kathy Gerwig, Vice President, Workplace Safety and Environmental Stewardship Officer, Kaiser Permanente
  •     Al Iannuzzi, Senior Director Product Stewardship, Worldwide Environment, Health & Safety at Johnson & Johnson
  •     John Messervy, AIA, Director of Capital and Facility Planning, Partners HealthCare
  •     Brad Perkins, MD, Executive Vice President for Strategy and Innovation and Chief Transformation Officer, Vanguard Health Systems
  •     Blair Sadler, Senior Fellow, Institute for Healthcare Improvement; former CEO of Rady Children's Hospital
  •     J. Knox Singleton, CEO, Inova Health System
  •     Jeff Thompson, MD, CEO, Gundersen Health System
  •     Christina Vernon, Executive Sustainability Officer, Cleveland Clinic
  •     Seema Wadhwa, Director, Healthier Hospitals Initiative

When: July 24, 2012 from 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. EDT

Where: The discussion will be live-streamed on the White House website at

Follow the discussion on Twitter by using #healthierhospitals

For more information, please contact Lauren Smith at (202) 591-4065 or

# # #

Download Media Advisory