Stanford Hospital is saving over 12 million gallons of water annually
Climate change is showing its sinister nature. There’s hardly a place left on Earth that is not affected. Some places, such as California, have been battling with severe drought for over a decade. Even though droughts are common in California, where dry spells are often followed by wet winters that replenish the state's critical snowpack and water reservoirs, the situation is getting worse, and everyone is trying to do their part. Even hospitals.
Hospitals are often the largest consumers of water in the communities they serve, and the costs of water have been continuously rising.
A 1995 Massachusetts Water Resources study asked how much water a typical hospital uses and found that water use can vary anywhere from 40 to 350 gallons per capita (individual served) each day. This study also identified five major areas of water use in a hospital setting in which Sanitary was the largest water user (42%) and acknowledged that the CSSD, which ensures the functions of sterile processing, was a significant user of water within the Sanitary area. With the water and sewerage costs of these facilities averaging over 20% of total utility costs, the more efficient hospitals can deliver patient care at a lower cost.
Stanford Hospital & Clinics, located in Palo Alto, California, took the recommendations of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to use water more efficiently and purchase more water efficient products to help mitigate the effects of drought.
One of Stanford’s goals was to be among the most water efficient hospitals in Northern California, which they demonstrate in the following ways:
- Through the installation of new equipment, the hospital is saving the facility and the City of Palo Alto over 12,000,000 gallons of water annually. This is equivalent to the amount of water used by 199 homes.
- Utility savings over the original existing equipment amount to USD 172,154.58 per annum.
- Equipment efficiency has reduced turnaround time for instrumentation back to the operating room (OR ). It only takes 7 minutes for the cart to be clean, dry and ready for the next step in the reprocessing loop with no loss of quality. Equipment/instruments also come out dry.
- Additionally, making the decision to use Belimed equipment has saved the hospital 104,840 lbs of CO2 annually.