Florida Hospital Sees Health Benefits in LEED Certification

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Posted: Wednesday, January 5, 2011 7:02 am | Updated: 7:31 am, Wed Jan 5, 2011.

TAMPA, Florida -- St. Joseph's Hospital-North in Lutz is LEED Certified, making it the first acute care hospital in Florida, and among the first in the nation, to recieve the designation.

"Research shows environmentally sustainable buildings contribute to improved health, so having a green hospital helps St. Joseph's achieve its vision of creating a healthy environment for the community it serves," said Colleen Mackin, executive Director, Florida Gulf Coast Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council.

The hospital was designed with an environmentally sustainable philosophy to create a landscape of open space, providing habitat for wildlife and natural views for patients.

The building is made of materials that support energy conservation and clean air with low chemical emissions and recycled content. The elements of the outdoors are brought indoors creating a calm, peaceful, healing environment for patients.

U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), which developed the LEED standards, provides third-party verification that buildings are designed and constructed using strategies aimed at improving performance in energy and water efficiency, emissions, indoor environmental quality and materials and resources.

Energy saving strategies include individual controls for lighting and heating to promote productivity, comfort and well-being of building occupants. High-efficiency systems that reduce energy consumption will use 12 percent less energy than a standard building. Refrigerants were selected to minimize the impact on ozone depletion and global warming.

"Buildings are one of the largest consumers of resources and energy in this country," said Paula McGuiness, chief operating officer of St. Joseph's Hospital-North. "St. Joseph's Hospitals and BayCare Health System believe in being leaders of environmental stewardship, innovation and corporate responsibility."

Other examples of consideration for the environment include:

* Preferred parking for low-emission and fuel-efficient vehicles.

* A roofing system that helps reduce the heat effect and keep temperatures cooler.

  • Low-flow water fixtures that use 20 percent less water than standard buildings.
  • Landscape that is maintained with 100 percent reclaimed water from retention ponds.
  • Use of low-emission paints, adhesives, sealants, fabrics and carpets inside of the building which provide cleaner air to breathe.
  • Use of construction materials from local sources, which supports the regional economy and reduces environmental impacts from transportation.

 

Located just north of Tampa in Lutz, St. Joseph's Hospital-North is part of BayCare Health System. It offers emergency care, surgical services, imaging and diagnostic facilities, intensive care and more in a peaceful, healing and family-centered environment.

SOURCE: BayCare Health System

 

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