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Green Building & Sustainable Development


Health Care Industry Embracing Green Building and Sustainability


McGraw-Hill Construction (MHC), part of The McGraw-Hill Companies, in conjunction with report sponsors Johns Manville, Turner Construction Company and US Green Building Council, today released the Health Care Green Building SmartMarket Report detailing the health care industry's incorporation of sustainability and green building into their construction projects.

The landmark study, seventh in a series, is based on research released last month. It confirms the increasing trend in green building in the $23.7 billion health care market -- the fourth largest commercial construction sector behind education, office and retail, respectively -- finding that:
  • 60% of respondents think green will transform the way health care buildings are designed and constructed.
  • 19% of study respondents expect their organization will be significantly involved with green building in 2008 -- more than triple the level for 2007.
  • 64% perceive more than 10% energy savings from green.
"Given that creating improved well-being is the overall mission of the healthcare industry, we are pleased to see evidence that the industry is aligning with green building practices. In this latest study, 91% of the respondents report improved medical facility staff and patient health and well-being as the most important reason for building green," stated Harvey M. Bernstein, vice president of Industry Analytics, Alliances and Strategic Initiatives for McGraw-Hill Construction. "Our SmartMarket Reports show further evidence of the growing trend toward green, and also point out the uniqueness of each market. These findings allow us to be strategic in how we can work toward encouraging the sea change," said Bernstein.

The Health Care Green Building SmartMarket Report also found that:
  • Internal management and designers/architects have most influence on going green.
  • 66% do not think energy reductions are the only reason to go green.
  • 57% see lack of information on green to be largest obstacle -- making it the leading challenge.
  • Perception remains that green is costly and doesn't have ROI benefits despite evidence to the contrary.
The report also addresses the impact of the Green Guide for Health Care (GGHC) and the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System on the market.
  • A third of respondents think lack of a specific LEED program for Health Care is an obstacle to increased green building in this sector.
  • Of those who have used GGHC, 78% found it valuable, with no respondents finding it of no value.
  • Of those expressing an opinion about the value of LEED, 76% thought it was valuable.
"Green buildings can have a significant impact on the health and comfort of their occupants, and nowhere is this more critical than in health care institutions," said Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO and Founding Chair of the U.S. Green Building Council. "Patients can clearly benefit from the natural light and cleaner, fresher air that are cornerstones of green buildings, and hospital staff benefits as well. These findings suggest health care administrators are beginning to believe that and to bring green building practices into their facilities, and we're pleased that our tools and programs are helping them get there," Fedrizzi added.

The Health Care Green Building SmartMarket Report also includes interviews profiling two green hospitals -- Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh and Metro Health Hospital in Wyoming, Michigan.

The study was based on a survey of senior healthcare and hospital administrators, collected online from January-February 2007, with a total of 95 respondents. The qualitative findings point to underlying opinions and trends motivating and influencing green building in the healthcare construction sector. Survey respondents were geographically diverse, with nearly equal numbers urban, suburban and rural. Twenty-eight percent were C- level executives.





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