How Innovation in Healthcare is Helping Hospitals to be Greener

What are the NHS Green Plans ?

In October 2020, the Greener NHS National Programme published its new strategy, Delivering a net zero National Health Service. The report set out trajectories and actions for the entire NHS to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2040 for the emissions it controls directly.

To support the co-ordination of carbon reduction efforts across the NHS and the translation of this national strategy to the local level, the 2021/22 NHS Standard Contract set out the requirement for trusts to develop a Green Plan to detail their approaches to reducing their emissions in line with the national trajectories.

The new NHS Green Plan is expected to match the increased net zero ambition and renewed delivery focus, with three clear outcomes:

• Ensure every NHS organisation is supporting the NHS-wide ambition to become the world’s first healthcare system to reach net zero carbon emissions
• Prioritise interventions which simultaneously improve patient care and community wellbeing while tackling climate change and broader sustainability issues
• Support organisations to plan and make prudent capital investments while increasing efficiencies
There are several recommended core chapters of the Green Plans, including Workforce and System Leadership and Sustainable Models of Care.

Workforce and System Leadership

The adoption of innovative technology can significantly improve workflow efficiencies.
Both patients and end users benefit from the adoption of innovative medical devices; timesaving devices such as TRITEMP™ non-contact thermometer reduce the time taken to measure temperature, as well as improving patient comfort and reducing waste.

With TRITEMP™ there are no plastic probe covers to locate or change, and therefore temperature measurement is much quicker than with traditional contact devices. TRITEMP™ gives nurses back time to do what they do best – care. For caregivers, releasing even 5 minutes per shift provides significant cost benefit and enables more time spent with the patient.

Additionally, because TRITEMP™ does not touch the patient, infection control is optimised. More than half of Hospital Acquired Infections are considered preventable1. Therefore, non-contact devices can help reduce the burden on healthcare of HAIs and could potentially reduce time spent in the hospital, positively impacting on patient flow and bed management.

Sustainable Models of Care

The NHS alone uses approximately 133,000 tonnes of plastic waste from hospitals each year.2
Investing in a switch from traditional contact thermometers to a reliable clinical grade non-contact thermometer such as the TRITEMP™ could eliminate hundreds of thousands of tonnes of single use plastic from hospitals. Using non-contact thermometers reduces the need for single use plastics which are harmful to the environment.

Decreasing the amount of consumables required by medical devices used in hospitals can significantly reduce the hospital’s expenditure annually. A hospital switching to TRITEMP™ non-contact thermometers can save approximately £100,000 in their first 2 years of implementation, depending on the size of the hospital.

The Health Service Executive has implemented TRITEMP™ across more than 200 locations across Ireland. Hear from Professor Martin Curley, Director of Digital Transformation, HSE , on the benefits.


1 Study: More Than Half of Hospital Infections Could Be Prevented With Proper Protocols – Patient Safety & Quality Healthcare (

2 The plastic pandemic: could the environmental impact of the NHS response to covid-19 be reduced?

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