BackgroundHealth Care Without Harm Europe was established in 2003 to focus on lobbying and implementing sustainable practices at a European-wide level. Thirteen organisations and additional stakeholders who were active in the health and environmental sectors came together to develop a Constitution, form a Member's Council, elect a Board of Directors, appoint a Steering Committee and set out an agenda to create an environmentally responsible European healthcare system.
MissionTo transform healthcare worldwide so that it reduces its environmental footprint, to become a community anchor for sustainability and a leader in the global movement for environment, health a justice.
Programme areasBuildings: Promote green and healthy healthcare facility design, construction, renovation and operations in order to minimise environmental impacts and foster restorative and sustainable healing environments.
Chemicals: Work with healthcare to eliminate harmful chemicals or substitute them with safer alternatives; minimise chemical exposure of patients, healthcare workers and communities; drive the design, use and safe disposal of safer materials and chemicals.
Energy: Accelerate the implementation of energy efficiency while promoting clean, renewable energy in healthcare, thereby mobilising the sector as a leader for a healthy energy future for all.
Food: Collaborate with healthcare facilities to promote, purchase and serve sustainably grown, healthy food so as to support the development of sustainable food systems that improve environmental health and address the upstream social and economic determinants of non-communicable diseases.
Pharmaceuticals: Support the safe production, management and disposal of pharmaceuticals, reducing their environmental and health impact throughout the entire life cycle and fostering innovations for green products.
Transportation: Promote transportation strategies for patients, their families and staff that support healthier local and regional transport systems, while reducing healthcare’s contribution to air pollution, climate change and the burden of disease.
Waste: Promote zero waste policies, reduce the volume and toxicity of waste produced by the healthcare sector, and implement safe, sustainable disposal options as alternatives to incineration.
Water: Develop conservation, recycling and treatment actions to reduce hospital water consumption and wastewater pollution; promote public health by advocating for policies and healthcare actions that assure community access to a safe water supply.