The NHS Long Term Plan (LTP) set out a commitment to deliver care in new ways for the 21st century. This must also include a focus on reducing carbon emissions and will involve using environmental impact as an additional factor in care design.
Other principles that improve quality of care and patient experience can also help to decarbonise care pathways:
Carbon savings will mainly come from reduced presentations in A&E, primary care and outpatients, reduced staff and patient mileage, reduced bed days, fewer pharmaceuticals prescribed, and less intensive procedures. A net zero framework will be developed to help consider and evaluate carbon reductions associated with new models of care.
During the Pandemic significant progress has been made in delivering virtual outpatient appointments, resulting in positive patient feedback. Investment is in place to further develop this work and increase the number of non-face to face appointments, and establish virtual appointments (where clinically appropriate).
We have been running a number of paper lite projects (e.g. E outcome forms for out-patients) and have reduced the number of printers on site. We will seek to develop further opportunities to adopt paper lite strategies in the delivery of care.
We will embed sustainable practices within our models or care, challenge and review the use of ‘single use’ items and seek alternatives.
Our staff at Salisbury District Hospital have long been well regarded for the quality of care and treatment they provide for our patients and for their innovation, commitment and professionalism. This has been recognised in a wide range of achievements and it is reflected in our award of NHS Foundation Trust status. This is afforded to hospitals that provide the highest standards of care.