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Launching a Green Revolution in Health Care 

Launching a Green Revolution in Health Care
Chapter:
Launching a Green Revolution in Health Care
Author(s):

Kathy Gerwig

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199385836.003.0001
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date: 02 June 2020

In the 1990’s evidence emerged that hospitals were harming the environment. Medical waste incinerators were the largest source of dioxin, a powerful cancer causing pollutant. Flexible plastic products used to treat babies in neonatal units were suspected of delivering harmful chemicals along with the treatment. Kaiser Permanente began working with Health Care Without Harm, a nongovernmental organization, to change the way doctors, nurses and hospital leaders think about environmental health. In recent years, the green health care movement has broadened its initial scope beyond toxics and waste to include alternative energy technologies, green design and construction, sustainable food services and community farmers’ markets, transportation, and promotion of a wide array of community-based environmental health initiatives.

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