Sustainable and Climate Resilient Healthcare Facilities: an update on federal efforts

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Tuesday, 4 February 2014: 1:30 PM
Room C213 (The Georgia World Congress Center )
John Balbus, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD

Weather disasters, such as Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina, have caused significant damage to healthcare and biomedical facilities and disruption of their operations. Changing climate and rising sea levels are anticipated to enhance weather-related threats to these facilities and the water, energy and transportation infrastructure that serves them. In response, many hospitals and health care organizations are assessing the needs for changes to placement and design of energy, heating and cooling, and water purification systems. Several new hospitals are incorporating innovative design modifications to improve their sustainability and climate resilience.

To help the nation's health sector meet the additional challenges associated with climate change, the Department of Health and Human Services is partnering with the private sector and other federal agencies to develop and disseminate informational tools that include guidance on vulnerability assessment and best practices for enhancing sustainability and climate resilience. This presentation will outline the present status of this initiative and detail current information resources and information needs for the health sector.