Catholic Health Association Joins 'Health Care Without Harm'

Apr 10, 2001, 01:00 ET from Catholic Health Association of the United States

    ST. LOUIS, April 10 /PRNewswire/ -- The Board of Trustees of the Catholic
 Health Association of the United States has approved the association's
 membership in Health Care Without Harm (HCWH), an international organization
 dedicated to promoting environmentally safe practices in health care
 institutions.
     HCWH is an international coalition of more than 290 organizations in 27
 countries, dedicated to eliminating environmental pollution from health care.
 Members include more than 100 hospitals. Its mission is "to transform the
 health care industry, so it is no longer a source of environmental harm, by
 eliminating pollution in health care practices without compromising safety or
 care."
     "The Catholic health ministry is concerned both with healing the persons
 who come to us for care and addressing the structures that contribute to
 disease in our society," stated Rev. Michael D. Place, STD, CHA's president
 and chief executive officer. "Joining with others as part of HCWH is a
 practical way to address the root causes of disease and to put in place within
 our own organizations structures and practices that are healthy, not harmful."
     Many CHA member organizations are already affiliated with HCWH, including
 Catholic Health East, Newtown Square, PA; Catholic Health Initiatives, Denver;
 Catholic Healthcare West, San Francisco; these systems' constituent
 organizations; and a number of individual Catholic-sponsored health care
 facilities.
     According to Colleen Scanlon, RN, JD, Catholic Health Initiative's senior
 vice president for advocacy, "Catholic Health Initiatives is involved with
 HCWH because this coalition provides another opportunity for us to advance our
 commitment to build healthy communities. As responsible stewards of our
 resources, we must try to ensure that health care services are delivered in a
 way that does not create any hazards or harms to the environment."
 
     HCWH accomplishes its mission by promoting comprehensive pollution
 prevention practices, supporting the development and use of environmentally
 safe materials, and educating and informing health care institutions and
 others about the environmental and public health consequences of the health
 care industry.
     Among the organization's goals are elimination of the nonessential
 incineration of medical waste and promotion of safe materials use and
 treatment practices; phaseout of the use of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and
 persistent toxic chemicals; phaseout of the use of mercury; and development of
 health-based standards for medical waste management, thereby recognizing and
 implementing the public's right to know about chemical use in the health care
 industry.
     Further information on HCWH can be found at http://www.noharm.org .
 
     The St. Louis-based Catholic Health Association of the United States (CHA)
 is the national leadership organization representing the Catholic health
 ministry. CHA's more than 2,000 members form the nation's largest group of
 not-for-profit health care sponsors, systems, facilities, health plans, and
 related organizations. For more information, visit the CHA website at
 http://www.chausa.org .
 
     CONTACT:  Fred Caesar, Senior Director, Public Affairs, of the Catholic
 Health Association, 202-296-3993 ext. 6321.
 
 

SOURCE Catholic Health Association of the United States
    ST. LOUIS, April 10 /PRNewswire/ -- The Board of Trustees of the Catholic
 Health Association of the United States has approved the association's
 membership in Health Care Without Harm (HCWH), an international organization
 dedicated to promoting environmentally safe practices in health care
 institutions.
     HCWH is an international coalition of more than 290 organizations in 27
 countries, dedicated to eliminating environmental pollution from health care.
 Members include more than 100 hospitals. Its mission is "to transform the
 health care industry, so it is no longer a source of environmental harm, by
 eliminating pollution in health care practices without compromising safety or
 care."
     "The Catholic health ministry is concerned both with healing the persons
 who come to us for care and addressing the structures that contribute to
 disease in our society," stated Rev. Michael D. Place, STD, CHA's president
 and chief executive officer. "Joining with others as part of HCWH is a
 practical way to address the root causes of disease and to put in place within
 our own organizations structures and practices that are healthy, not harmful."
     Many CHA member organizations are already affiliated with HCWH, including
 Catholic Health East, Newtown Square, PA; Catholic Health Initiatives, Denver;
 Catholic Healthcare West, San Francisco; these systems' constituent
 organizations; and a number of individual Catholic-sponsored health care
 facilities.
     According to Colleen Scanlon, RN, JD, Catholic Health Initiative's senior
 vice president for advocacy, "Catholic Health Initiatives is involved with
 HCWH because this coalition provides another opportunity for us to advance our
 commitment to build healthy communities. As responsible stewards of our
 resources, we must try to ensure that health care services are delivered in a
 way that does not create any hazards or harms to the environment."
 
     HCWH accomplishes its mission by promoting comprehensive pollution
 prevention practices, supporting the development and use of environmentally
 safe materials, and educating and informing health care institutions and
 others about the environmental and public health consequences of the health
 care industry.
     Among the organization's goals are elimination of the nonessential
 incineration of medical waste and promotion of safe materials use and
 treatment practices; phaseout of the use of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and
 persistent toxic chemicals; phaseout of the use of mercury; and development of
 health-based standards for medical waste management, thereby recognizing and
 implementing the public's right to know about chemical use in the health care
 industry.
     Further information on HCWH can be found at http://www.noharm.org .
 
     The St. Louis-based Catholic Health Association of the United States (CHA)
 is the national leadership organization representing the Catholic health
 ministry. CHA's more than 2,000 members form the nation's largest group of
 not-for-profit health care sponsors, systems, facilities, health plans, and
 related organizations. For more information, visit the CHA website at
 http://www.chausa.org .
 
     CONTACT:  Fred Caesar, Senior Director, Public Affairs, of the Catholic
 Health Association, 202-296-3993 ext. 6321.
 
 SOURCE  Catholic Health Association of the United States