HealthPartners: Promoting circularity and building a business case

Region

Minnesota

Timeline

2014 - present

Audience

Healthcare systems

Challenge

Becoming a sustainable organization is no easy feat but the rewards will be seen for decades to come.

Result

HealthPartners sustainability efforts continues to produce savings across the company. In 2019, HealthPartners saw over $830,000 in energy savings, over $2.3 million in savings from greening its operating rooms, and over $800,000 in savings from paper reduction. Additionally, the organization saved over $320,000 through waste minimization work.

With the strong and ambitious sustainability efforts of staff across HealthPartners, the company was able to save a total of $3.5 million and divert over 3,000 tons of waste in 2019 alone, demonstrating positive financial impacts greening an organization can have. As HealthPartners has shown, achieving circularity by reducing waste can happen at large organizations.

With the right mindset across the company, these business solutions to saving in energy efficiency, waste minimization, and conserving resources can be replicated. Similarly, focusing on company strengths while consistently adjusting and adapting sustainability efforts to fit goals can effectively promote circularity.

Process

Energy efficiency

Through HealthPartners commitment to more sustainable energy practices, they saved $111,000 in energy rebates, translating to $420,000 in annual savings in 2019. The organizations community solar gardens have produced 12,600 MWh in solar energy which is equivalent to powering more than 1,000 homes a year. This solar program saved HealthPartners $300,000 in rebates and energy since implementation in 2017. Additionally, HealthPartners invests in sustainable transportation by purchasing electric vehicles, promoting carpooling and public transportation, and installing electric vehicle charging stations.

Waste minimization

As a healthcare organization, waste is generated and largely unavoidable, but HealthPartners redirects this waste out of landfills. In 2019, over 3,300 tons of materials were kept out of the landfills with 220 tons of organic waste diverted.

HealthPartners saved $320,000 through these methods of waste reuse and diversion. Through waste reuse, the organization has donated over 65 tons of materials to local non-profits and missions globally.

Conserving resources

In the process of making operating rooms more sustainable, HealthPartners saved over $2.3 million. Part of these savings comes from to the organization’s ability to avoid or divert 470 tons of waste. This was made possible by collecting and dumping surgical fluids to a sanitary sewer as well as collecting single use medical devices for reprocessing. By working with utility providers and using more efficient practices, HealthPartners saved over 8.2 million gallons of water.

Through HealthPartners program to support the local economy, they were able to purchase over $1.8 million in food and beverages, demonstrating the company’s commitment to the community. Additionally, the organization has saved over $800,000 in print management in the past six years.

HealthPartners: Promoting circularity and building a business case

Member Highlight: HealthPartners

HealthPartners is a member of the Sustainable Growth Coalition and the largest consumer-governed, non-profit health care organization in the nation. Their mission is to improve health and well-being in partnership with members, patients, and the community.

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HealthPartners: Promoting circularity and building a business case

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