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Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Green Hospitals: Setting New Standards

Dr. Vivek Desai
Managing Director
Hosmac India Pvt.Ltd
Healthcare industry is growing at a rapid pace not only in India,   but    globally as well. In India itself we need to triple our hospital infrastructure to come closer to the World Health Organization norm of 4 beds per thousand population. This will call for massive capital infusion and will also increase the demand of such infrastructure on the already scare resource of energy as hospitals building operate 24 hours 365 days and are at least 50% percent air-conditioned building if not 100%.

In our context, i.e. of Green Healthcare, there is a lot we should, can and need be doing for the cause. Many of those who keep a tab on the profitability aspect of a hospital, would be aware of he electricity costs. What you may not be aware of is the collective impact that we as an industry have on the electricity consumption.

There are two important lessons to be gleaned from above statistics, one is that these are current figures, and that the consumption, commensurate with expansion in the number of beds, is slated to grow by another 8.5 million kWh / year for the next few years. The second learning is to be had from the variation in the two extreme figures in the range. Understandably, there would be multiple and valid reasons to account for this variation of almost 100% - but if facilities at both the ends of the spectrum are working, then there is room for revisiting. In any case, it is established that if energy conservations measures are adopted and coupled with enabling architectural design to harness natural light and ventilation, it should be possible to bring about a reduction of 10% as has been evidenced by a number of case studies. A10% reduction would imply a saving of up to INR 800 million every year, sufficient to cater to the capex requirement of setting up a 150 bed tertiary care hospital! Every year!

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