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Environmental aspects of health care in the Grampian NHS region and the place of telehealth.

Wootton R, Tait A, Croft A - J Telemed Telecare (2010)

Bottom Line: Based on the limited information available, our best guess is that travel emissions in Grampian are substantial, perhaps 49,000 tonnes CO(2) per year.On the other hand, telehealth might be useful in reducing staff travel and to a lesser extent, visitor travel.It looks particularly promising for reducing outpatient travel, where substantial carbon savings might be made by reconfiguring the way that certain services are provided.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Scottish Centre for Telehealth, Aberdeen, UK. r_wootton@pobox.com

ABSTRACT
Detailed information about the composition of the carbon footprint of the NHS in the Grampian health region, and in Scotland generally, is not available at present. Based on the limited information available, our best guess is that travel emissions in Grampian are substantial, perhaps 49,000 tonnes CO(2) per year. This is equivalent to 233 million km of car travel per year. A well-established telemedicine network in the Grampian region, which saves over 2000 patient journeys a year from community hospitals, avoids about 260,000 km travel per year, or about 59 tonnes CO(2) per year. Therefore using telehealth as it has been used historically (primarily to facilitate hospital-to-hospital interactions) seems unlikely to have a major environmental impact--although of course there may be other good reasons for persevering with conventional telehealth. On the other hand, telehealth might be useful in reducing staff travel and to a lesser extent, visitor travel. It looks particularly promising for reducing outpatient travel, where substantial carbon savings might be made by reconfiguring the way that certain services are provided.

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NHS (England) – the total CO2 emissions were 18.6 million tonnes in 20041
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JTT-16-4-015F1: NHS (England) – the total CO2 emissions were 18.6 million tonnes in 20041

Mentions: The NHS is a large organization and consequently it has a substantial impact on the environment. There are three sources of carbon emissions that make up the carbon footprint of the NHS.1 The largest source is the ‘embodied’ carbon emissions, i.e. those resulting from the goods and services consumed by the NHS. Second, there are the direct carbon emissions associated with buildings, and finally there are the carbon emissions resulting from travel connected with NHS activities. In England, roughly half of the CO2 emitted comes from the first source, called procurement. About a quarter each comes from building energy use and from travel (see Figure 1).


Environmental aspects of health care in the Grampian NHS region and the place of telehealth.

Wootton R, Tait A, Croft A - J Telemed Telecare (2010)

NHS (England) – the total CO2 emissions were 18.6 million tonnes in 20041
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3104823&req=5

JTT-16-4-015F1: NHS (England) – the total CO2 emissions were 18.6 million tonnes in 20041
Mentions: The NHS is a large organization and consequently it has a substantial impact on the environment. There are three sources of carbon emissions that make up the carbon footprint of the NHS.1 The largest source is the ‘embodied’ carbon emissions, i.e. those resulting from the goods and services consumed by the NHS. Second, there are the direct carbon emissions associated with buildings, and finally there are the carbon emissions resulting from travel connected with NHS activities. In England, roughly half of the CO2 emitted comes from the first source, called procurement. About a quarter each comes from building energy use and from travel (see Figure 1).

Bottom Line: Based on the limited information available, our best guess is that travel emissions in Grampian are substantial, perhaps 49,000 tonnes CO(2) per year.On the other hand, telehealth might be useful in reducing staff travel and to a lesser extent, visitor travel.It looks particularly promising for reducing outpatient travel, where substantial carbon savings might be made by reconfiguring the way that certain services are provided.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Scottish Centre for Telehealth, Aberdeen, UK. r_wootton@pobox.com

ABSTRACT
Detailed information about the composition of the carbon footprint of the NHS in the Grampian health region, and in Scotland generally, is not available at present. Based on the limited information available, our best guess is that travel emissions in Grampian are substantial, perhaps 49,000 tonnes CO(2) per year. This is equivalent to 233 million km of car travel per year. A well-established telemedicine network in the Grampian region, which saves over 2000 patient journeys a year from community hospitals, avoids about 260,000 km travel per year, or about 59 tonnes CO(2) per year. Therefore using telehealth as it has been used historically (primarily to facilitate hospital-to-hospital interactions) seems unlikely to have a major environmental impact--although of course there may be other good reasons for persevering with conventional telehealth. On the other hand, telehealth might be useful in reducing staff travel and to a lesser extent, visitor travel. It looks particularly promising for reducing outpatient travel, where substantial carbon savings might be made by reconfiguring the way that certain services are provided.

Show MeSH