As seen on AZoBuild. 

Green building and sustainability as it is being incorporated into the health care industry’s construction projects is the focus of a new study by McGraw-Hill Construction (MHC) that has just been released in conjunction with report sponsors Johns Manville, Turner Construction Company and the U.S. Green Building Council. The Health Care Green Building SmartMarketTM Report, was published and made available to the public on June 14, 2007.

The landmark study is the seventh report in a comprehensive series and is based on detailed research that was released just last month. The findings of this report confirm the increasing trend in green building within the $23.7 billion health care market, which is the fourth largest commercial construction sector behind education, office and retail construction respectively. The findings of the Health Care Green Building SmartMarketTM Report show 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 building.

“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 the 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 SmartMarketTM 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 of change,” said Bernstein.

The Health Care Green Building SmartMarketTM Report also found the following:
• Internal management and designers/architects have the most influence on health care organizations going green.
• 66% do not think energy reductions are the only reason to go green.
• 57% see lack of information on green to be the 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 impact of the Green Guide for Health CareTM (GGHC) and the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental DesignTM (LEED) Green Building Rating System on the market is also addressed in the Health Care Green Building SmartMarketTM Report:
• 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 in this, and to bring green building practices into their facilities, and we are pleased that our tools and programs are helping them to get there,” Fedrizzi added.

The study was based on a survey of senior healthcare and hospital administrators, collected online from January through 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.