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Green Circle Health and ENvironment Leadership Platform's Inaugural newsletter

Health and Environment Leadership Platform (HELP) is an initiative established by Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI), and Centre for Chronic Disease Control (CCDC), in partnership with Health Care Without Harm (HCWH). HELP brings together representatives of healthcare institutions and physicians in addition to various other health sector players.

2018 MILESTONES

As of 31st December 2018, HELP has a total of 56 individual members bringing in a diverse group of hospitals, health associations, medical colleges and physicians.

Currently the platform represents more than 7300 healthcare institutions, and 30,000 physicians.

All the 56 members are also members of the GGHH (Global Green and Healthy Hospitals). GGHH network which has more than 1,150 members in 55 countries representing the interests of over 36,000 hospitals and health centres.

HELP established the Hospital Air Quality network in 2018

HELP will be co-hosting HELP-AHPI Green Awards at the AHPI Global Conclave, 2019

CASE STUDIES

In 2018, eight case studies were documented, of which five were published on different aspects of waste management, energy conservation and water recycling.

Click here to view case studies from Global- GGHH members

Air Quality Monitoring at Hospitals
  • H.E.L.P has established a network of low-cost air quality monitors in tier 2 and tier 3 cities.
  • The initiative is aimed at mobilizing the healthcare sector to establish air pollution monitoring capacity in cities where little to none exist. Installations are to take place in phases where phase 1 cities have been completed in 2018.
  • This included installation of TV screens along with the monitors to display air quality data in the common areas of hospital building such as reception, waiting areas etc.
  • Apart from the data displayed on TV screens, a brief set of advisory on health impacts of air pollution through small IEC material is also designed to be displayed for general patient awareness and understanding.
  • The IEC material is developed in English, Hindi, Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu languages for greater regional outreach.
  • Six monitors have been installed in Phase 1 in Gurgaon, Bareilly, Dhanbad, Kochi, Coimbatore and Guntur. The rest of the proposed sites will be completed before April '19.
  • Our partner organisations have also installed monitors in Chennai and Korba.

Understanding the Perspective of Health Practitioners

At present, in India, an understanding of doctor’s approach and capabilities around the issue of air pollution are mostly anecdotal. Such existing anecdotal understanding does not help us to conclusively say how far aware or prepared Indian doctors are in the context of health impact of air pollution. In order to address this gap we intend to carry out a short term research study titled ‘Knowledge, Attitude and Practice of Health Practitioners towards Health Effects of Air Pollution from Secondary and Tertiary cities in India’. Through this research we aim to understand doctor’s awareness, capabilities and preparedness vis-à-vis air pollution.

Objective: To understand the knowledge and awareness of doctors about the health impacts of air pollution, their communication on air pollution to their patients, does air pollution feature as a priority within the health community?

Method: Key informant interviews with Cardiologists, Pulmonologists, Pediatricians and General Physicians.

Preliminary Findings:

  1. Air pollution is not a universal concern.
  2. Air Pollution is Defined Exclusively from the Domain of Respiratory Diseases.
  3. Geographical Location or Demographic Details do not Determine Awareness.
  4. Awareness about the Gap

Research sites: Kochi, Ahmedabad, Lucknow and Raipur

Climate-Smart Initiatives and Awards

HELP-Green Hospital Awards is a joint collaborative with our HELP member Association for Healthcare Providers in India (AHPI). The initial discussion for launching the Green Hospital Awards was successful. HELP Secretariat played a vital role in setting up the criteria for the 2019 Green Hospital Awards. The Green Awards will be awarded at the 2019 AHPI Global Conclave.

A monograph on “Green healthcare institution” was developed in 2017, to serve as a guide for hospitals on how to build and manage health institutions which does no harm to the environment. The guide also recommends list of achievable targets to reduce their ecological footprint. This monograph now stands as a literature work for building a National Green Hospital Standard. The standard is developed by the HELP Secretariat with guidance from Dr. B.K. Rana (CEO, Quality Accreditation Institute). Upon completion, the standard will go through an intensive national and international evaluation, before being published.

Health Care Climate Challenge

Launched in 2015 at the Paris Climate Conference, the Health Care Climate Challenge is a Health Care Without Harm initiative to mobilize health care institutions around the world to play a leadership role in addressing climate change. We know that climate change is already exacerbating a wide range of health problems the world over. Health care is uniquely positioned to play a leading role in addressing climate change, which The Lancet has called the greatest health threat of the 21st century. In order to protect local and global health from climate change and its sources, the world needs to move toward an economy based on clean, renewable, healthy energy. Indeed, a transition to a clean energy economy will benefit both the climate and people’s health.

Today more than 180 institutions representing the interests of over 17,000 hospitals and health centers from more than 26 countries, have joined the Health Care Climate Challenge and committed to taking meaningful action. By 2018, Challenge participants had collectively reported commitments to reduce their carbon emissions by more than 16 million metric tons—the equivalent of both a year of carbon emissions from 4 coal fired power plants , and of saving an estimated U.S. $1.7 billion in health costs related to air pollution. Participants also report saving U.S. $381 million through energy efficiency and renewable energy generation.

Join the Health Care Climate Challenge

By moving toward low carbon health systems, health care can mitigate its own climate impact, save money and lead by example. By becoming more resilient, health care can help prepare for the growing impacts of climate change.

Any hospital, health system, or health organization can join the Health Care Climate Challenge Challenge. By doing so, they are granted automatic membership in GGHH.If you are not a GGHH member and agree to participate in the challenge by signing the climate pledge (below), your institution will receive an automatic membership in GGHH, and with it, access to tools and resources, including our online collaboration platform, GGHH Connect, and Hippocrates Data Center. Click here to sign up for the Health Care Climate Action Pledge

Bio- Medical Waste Management Pictorial Guide: A pictorial guide on bio-medical waste management rules, 2016 and its subsequent amendments of 2018 is being developed based on the comments by leading health practitioners from public and private hospitals. These include Dr Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital-New Delhi, Dr Lal Path Labs-Gurgaon, King George’s Medical College-Lucknow and Bhagat Hospital, New Delhi. For documentation of their comments, face- to- face survey/ open discussions with key health practitioners and hospital managers have been conducted. These were aimed at highlighting key gaps in the implementation of current bio-medical waste management rules and the how pictorial can be useful to bridge the same. Currently details from the open discussions are being analyzed by HELP secretariat team along with Dr Shyamala Mani who has more than 30 years of experience in working with different institutions at State and Centre level on waste management and environment heath.

Upcoming Events

Jan 25th, 2019: National Orientation Webinar on Health and Environment Leadership Platform (8am to 9:30am)

March 23rd, 2019 in New Delhi: Second edition of the National Health Conclave themed–“Climate Change and Health-Role of the Health Sector”

The Conclave is dedicated to the health impacts of climate change in India and appropriate risk mitigation and adaptation strategies, with specific focus on the health sector. The conclave will cover talks and panel discussions on the theme and is proposed to conclude with an inspiring concert themed – “LET US LIVE”, featuring Grammy award-winning composer, music producer and environmentalist, Mr. Ricky Kej. For further information, please follow the link or contact nationalhealthconclave@gmail.com

To join HELP or to know more about the platform, kindly write to help.ceh@phfi.org

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Created by: Shriram Manogaran. Written and edited by: Poornima Prabhakran, Shriram Manogaran, Ananya Tewari, Surabhi Dogra, Vidushi Bahuguna and Nick Thorp. Photo credits: Pexels: Free Stock Photos. Copyright © Health and Environment Leadership Platform, 2019. All rights reserved.

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