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Nation's Largest Healthcare System Pledges Involvement in Healthy Hospital Iniative

Release Date: 09/17/2003
Contact Information:

David Deegan 617-918-1017 /

(09/17/03) The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the largest integrated healthcare network in the country, has committed to reduce its environmental impact by becoming a “Champion for Change” in the innovative Hospitals for a Healthy Environment (H2E) program. The VA is now the first government-owned healthcare system to commit to the proactive goals of the voluntary H2E program. The program is designed to help health care facilities reduce their environmental impact while saving money, reducing liability and increasing compliance. The H2E program has set ambitious goals of eliminating the use of mercury in health care by 2005, cutting health care waste in half by 2010 and reducing the use and production of toxic and hazardous substances. To date, more than 460 H2E Partners and 55 Champions, representing nearly 1,800 health care facilities, have signed on to help achieve these goals. In the program, “Partners” are individual hospitals and healthcare facilities, while “Champions” are larger, multi-facility healthcare networks and associations. Operating nearly 170 hospitals across the country, the VA will also be one of the largest healthcare systems to become an H2E Champion. Hospitals for a Healthy Environment is a joint program of the American Hospital Association, EPA, Health Care Without Harm and the American Nurses Association. For more information about H2E, go to: .