Green planet

Funding for new research to “accelerate progress” towards reducing NHS carbon footprint

UCLPartners has announced that it will be funding four new projects through its “Connecting for Change” programme, in an attempt to bridge a “nationwide evidence gap” surrounding the safest ways to accelerate the achievements of NHS net zero targets.

The four research proposals receiving funding include one that looks to investigate how carbon costing of resources and pathways within orthopaedic clinical trials can be embedded; a proposal that considers an evidence-based approach to changing perceptions around ventilation and energy efficiency; an assessment of the potential for energy reduction in current and future operating theatres; and a proposal to use building performance models to accelerate net zero healthcare.

To select the proposals, a “sandpit” methodology was used to bring together a multidisciplinary mix of 30 participants across three immersive sessions, focusing on tackling real-world challenges and barriers to decarbonising NHS estates. The chosen proposals are from Barts Health NHS Trust, University College London, University College London Hospitals Foundation Trust and NHS Property Services.

Connecting for Change is supported by Greener NHS, whose chief sustainability officer Nick Watts welcomed the programme as bringing “the right people, ideas and energy together to drive change for our patients and communities”.

At IH, we have explored green plans from integrated care systems focusing on areas such as sustainable models of care, digital transformation and travel and transport.

At a local level, we have also examined some NHS Trusts green plans, looking at some of the actions in place to support the NHS’s Net Zero ambitions, such as Leeds Teaching Hospitals’ electric vehicle trial.

In other sustainability news, we covered how earlier this year NHS England published guidance on the procurement process and the role of suppliers in contributing to net zero targets.