Contact: Debra Thompson
Director, RMH Corporate Communications
RMH has received a 2011 Leadership Award for Sustainability Excellence from VHA Inc., a national health care network.
This award is part of the prestigious “Excellence Awards” program and honors VHA member hospitals and health care systems for their work to develop and implement outstanding sustainability programs.
“We are honored to receive this award from VHA in recognition of our environmental sustainability initiatives,” noted Dennis Coffman, director, Facilities Planning and Development at RMH. “We strive to be good stewards of our resources and to do what is best for our community—now and for generations to come.”
RMH is one of 13 hospitals across the nation, and the only one in Virginia, to be recognized with the Sustainability Excellence Award.
According to VHA, the award winners engaged in diverse activities, from recycling and reuse efforts by employees and providing reusable coffee cups in cafeterias to building LEED-certified parking structures with outlets to charge electric cars. Despite such wide-ranging activities, VHA notes, the award-winning hospitals all coordinated efforts internally and engaged executives to support and help build employee enthusiasm for sustainability efforts.
VHA stated that major success factors at all the winning organizations were their need to make sustainability a unified and cohesive program and their desire to transform the way they do business.
RMH received LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council in 2010 for its new hospital, which opened in June 2010. A few of the environmentally friendly building features include low-VOC building materials; a white roof to deflect sunlight; water runoff control to preserve wetlands on the 254-acre campus; down-lighting in parking lots to minimize light pollution; and use of methane gas from the Rockingham County landfill to power boilers. In addition, more than two-thirds of the materials collected from clearing farm buildings on the site were recycled.
“VHA congratulates RMH on this honor and thanks them for their commitment to sustainability,” said Colleen Risk, VHA executive vice president. “By recognizing that we can all do well by doing good, RMH has prioritized sustainability and created a healthier environment.”
VHA Inc., based in Irving, Texas, is a national network of not-for-profit health care organizations that work together to drive maximum savings in the supply chain arena, set new levels of clinical performance and identify and implement best practices to improve operational efficiency and clinical outcomes. Formed in 1977, VHA serves nearly 1,350 not-for-profit hospitals and more than 30,000 non-acute care providers nationwide. VHA coordinates delivery of its programs and services through its 16 regional offices.
The Sustainability Excellence Award is part of VHA’s larger commitment to recognize and advance innovative sustainability initiatives through efforts like its Corporate Citizenship & Sustainability Scorecard and Member Collaboration Sustainability Site.
“Our not-for-profit hospital members face many competing challenges--everything from improving quality with limited resources to responding to new demands posed by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Yet RMH had the foresight to take on ambitious sustainability programs,” said Risk. “In recognizing RMH, VHA hopes other hospitals and health systems will take steps to reduce health care’s environmental impact and help to create a more sustainable future.”