Commitment to Sustainability
Baxter has a long standing commitment to sustainability, reflected in our global priorities. In order to build a sustainable health system, focus must be on not just the financial, but also on social and environmental factors that allow the healthcare products and services we supply to be fit for today and tomorrow.
We are looking in detail at reducing the carbon footprints of some of our products, helping our customers meet their own targets of reducing carbon emissions, which could ultimately save the NHS at least £180 million per year. Carbon Footprint work done in 2008 show that 60% of the NHS Carbon footprint lies in the procurement of products, with about half of this coming from medical products and pharmaceuticals.1 We have invested in energy management at our UK facilities. We have reduced the environmental impact of deliveries to customers, through route optimization and improved vehicles (e.g. teardrop shaped lorries). We recognise the importance of high levels of governance around carbon; we have strong global priorities and transparent reporting through the Carbon Disclosure Project. This has led to UK recognition including ‘Brand Emission Leader’ status.
Being more resource efficient is at the heart of what we do. When designing and developing new products, consideration and reduction of environmental impacts form a vital part of our Product Sustainability Review. We constantly strive to reduce the resources used in manufacturing our products. Minimising the packaging round our products saves natural resources, reduces waste volumes and saves our customers money in disposal at end of life.
Sustainable Models of Care
Sustainability includes the social aspects of healthcare. Many patients feel their quality of life is better when they are treated at home.
Patient centred treatment e.g. reducing travel associated with treatment, by delivering care in the home rather than hospital, reduces carbon emissions. For instance, the average renal patient receiving in-centre haemodialysis clocks up 747kg/CO2 emissions per year on travel to and from hospital for treatment. Home haemodialysis by contrast gives rise to 19Kg/CO2 per patient per year.2 Whilst the transportation of patients is only part of the carbon footprint of the whole treatment, this saving of 728kg per patient per year is significant.
1 NHS England Carbon Emissions Carbon Footprinting Report, Sept 2008, p3
2 The carbon footprints of home and in‐center maintenance hemodialysis in the United Kingdom Andrew CONNOR,Robert LILLYWHITE, Matthew W. COOKE. Hemodialysis International 2011;1–13