The Green Digest
A Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care Initiative

RETScreen is a Clean Energy Management Software system for energy efficiency, renewable energy and co generation project feasibility analysis as well as ongoing energy performance analysis. Learn more HERE .
April 20, 2020
In the interests of public safety, please follow health agency guidelines to help keep us all healthy. For more information and prevention tips, visit the Government of Canada's COVID-19 site HERE .
Optimization of N95 respirator masks during supply shortages
A shortage of N95 respirator masks is being experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, various strategies are being explored and suggested to increase the availability of N95 masks in this time of shortage, such as the extended use of N95 respirator masks, use of the masks past their shelf lives, methods for sterilizing and reusing N95 masks, and more. This report summarizes current recommendations and will be updated regularly as additional guidance becomes available.
COVID-19 ushers in new era for telemedicine
Social distancing required to prevent the spread of COVID-19 has led to a sharp increase in the use of telemedicine. The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed how doctors provide health care. This public health crisis has shifted the paradigm on how Canadians access medical care and has ushered in the new era of telemedicine. Almost overnight, patients have stopped walking into their doctors’ offices and are instead receiving medical care through online platforms. Read Dr. Mahal's full story HERE .
Leger provides free COVID-19 survey results
Leger’s latest survey about COVID-19, conducted in partnership with the Association for Canadian Studies (ACS) and published in The Canadian Press, from April 3-5, 2020 among 1,512 Canadians and 1,000 Americans reveals that 44% of Canadians and 41% of Americans have experienced a decrease in their income due to the COVID-19 crisis. Learn more HERE .
National COVID-19 Volunteer Recruitment Campaign - Canada needs you!
The Government of Canada is working with provincial and territorial governments to respond to COVID-19. They are seeking volunteers to help in the following areas:
  1. Case tracking and contact tracing;
  2. Case data collection and reporting; and,
  3. Health system surge capacity.

They are building an inventory of volunteers from which provincial and territorial governments can draw as needed.

Please visit the  recruitment page  to submit your name to join in Canada’s response to COVID-19. Thank you in advance for helping to protect the health of Canadians.
National guidance now available for COVID-19 control in long-term care
Details of the Public Health Agency of Canada’s interim guidance for COVID-19 infection prevention and control in long-term care homes have been published on the federal government’s  website .
The guidelines, which are not mandatory, were  announced April 13  by Dr. Theresa Tam, chief public health officer, following a dramatic increase in COVID-19 outbreaks and deaths in long-term care homes. “Many of the deaths across Canada are linked to long-term care facilities and these devastating events have underscored the need for stringent infection prevention and control measures,” said Dr. Tam. More HERE .
Early signs of decrease in garbage despite increase in COVID-19 protective measures
Masks, latex gloves and antibacterial wipes have become a routine part of many New Brunswickers' lives since the COVID-19 pandemic hit last month, but the landfills for the three largest regions haven't seen a significant increase in volume from hospitals or homes. In fact, Fredericton Region Solid Waste has seen less garbage overall, according to Brad Janes, manager of public relations. The Horizon Health Network is closely following the Public Health Agency of Canada's interim guidelines for acute health-care settings for COVID-19 infection prevention and control  waste management , said Jeff Carter, corporate director for capital assets and infrastructure services. Full story HERE .
COVID-19 pandemic generating tons of waste
 Garbage contaminated with bodily fluids or other infectious materials is becoming a bigger concern for hospitals as they brace for a surge in patients sick with COVID-19 in the US. Patients and health care workers are quickly going through medical supplies and disposable personal protective equipment, like masks. Eventually all that used gear piles up as medical waste that needs to be safely discarded.
In Wuhan, where the novel coronavirus first emerged, officials didn’t just need to build new hospitals for the influx of patients; they had to construct a  new medical waste plant  and  deploy 46 mobile waste treatment facilities too . Hospitals there generated six times as much medical waste at the peak of the outbreak as they did before the crisis began. The daily output of medical waste reached 240 metric tons, about the weight of an adult blue whale. More HERE .
How medical waste is disposed of in Wuhan
What happens to the waste generated by COVID-19 hospitals? Follow Xinhua reporter Xu Zeyu as he traces the trash in coronavirus epicentre. Watch YouTube video HERE .
Coronavisus Resource Centre
The coronavirus pandemic puts an extraordinary and unprecedented burden on health systems, organisations, and professionals. Never before have we faced a global crisis of this magnitude, one that challenges every country’s capacity to deliver health care services. Health Care Without Harm has developed this resource for partners around the world, for members of our Global Green and Healthy Hospitals Network, and for the broader community engaged at the intersection of environment, climate change and health.

Staff has curated a list of resources and guidelines produced by Health Care Without Harm, its partners and multilateral organisations to offer solutions to some of the challenges this crisis brings.
CADTH and COVID-19 answers
If you’re looking for credible answers to your COVID-19 questions, click  HERE.
The Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health (CADTH), is an independent, not-for-profit organisation responsible for providing Canadian health care decision-makers with objective evidence, advice, and recommendations to inform their policy and practice decisions. On the site, you’ll find information related to COVID-19 from CADTH and other respected organisations. Although some of the information predates the COVID-19 pandemic, all of it is timely and relevant to this current situation.
CSA offer no-fee access to COVID-19 response standards
In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Canadian Standards Association (CSA Group) has made a selection of relevant standards available for no-fee view access through the online platform at the following link:  

The following standards are currently included:
  • Z1600-17, Emergency and continuity management program
  • CAN/CSA-Z94.4-18, Selection, use, and care of respirators
  • CSA Z8002:19, Operation and maintenance of health care facilities
  • CSA Z317.2:19, Special requirements for heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems in health care facilities
  • Z8000-18, Canadian health care facilities
  • CAN/CSA-Z1630-17, Community paramedicine: Framework for program development
  • Z317.10-15, Handling of health care waste materials
  • CAN/CSA-Z317.13-17, Infection control during construction, renovation, and maintenance of health care facilities
  • Z317.14-17, Wayfinding for health care facilities
  • Z1003.1-18, Psychological health and safety in the paramedic service organizations
  • CAN/CSA-Z1003-13/BNQ 9700-803/2013 (R18), Psychological health and safety in the workplace – Prevention, promotion, and guidance to staged implementation
  • SPE Z1003 Implementation Handbook, Assembling the Pieces: An Implementation Guide to the National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace

If you are a manufacturer or emergency service responding to the COVID-19 outbreak and require access to a standard, please contact  so that we can arrange for complimentary working access to the document.To purchase copies of these standards, please visit the  CSA Store .
Sustainable Transportation
Fact Sheet #2
Benefits of workplace Charging
Investing in workplace charging can result in multiple benefits for both employers and employees. This resource outlines many of the key benefits and can assist you in helping your many stakeholder groups understand the business case for workplace charging. Download the Fact Sheet #2 HERE.

To learn more about electric and zero-emission vehicles and how they can play a part in your health care organisation, visit the Coalition's ZEV resources page at
Plug'n Drive offers wealth of ZEV information
Plug’n Drive is a non-profit organisation committed to accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles in order to maximize their environmental and economic benefits. Since 2011, Plug’n Drive has established itself as a leader in the electric vehicle (EV) industry, a trusted and unbiased source of information on electric cars, charging stations and the electricity sector.

Plug’n Drive would be pleased to assist your organisation navigate EV adoption with a webinar series, EV test drive event, workplace lunch’n learn or engagement opportunities at its Electric Vehicle Discovery Centre. Learn more about their new publication Lead the Charge - email
Earth Day on Climate Action
Earth Day is April 22
Earth Day is April 22 of every year. April 22, 2020 will mark 50 years of Earth Day. The theme for Earth Day 2020 is climate action . The enormous challenge — but also the vast opportunities — of action on climate change have distinguished the issue as the most pressing topic for the 50th anniversary. Climate change represents the biggest challenge to the future of humanity and the life-support systems that make our world habitable.

The world needs you — and your actions — for Earth Day 2020. There’s so much you can do to help protect and restore our planet, from joining a cleanup or climate strike, to taking part in the world’s largest citizen science initiative, to hosting an event in your own community!  Check out the map and learn more below.
Climate Change Toolkit for Health Professionals
This collaborative toolkit consists of eight modules designed for health professionals and students in the health care and public health sectors who want to engage more directly on the issue of climate change as educators with their patients, peers and communities, and/or as advocates for the policies, programs and practices needed to mitigate climate change and/or prepare for climate change in their workplaces and communities.
Module 6 focuses on taking action on climate change at health facilities.
View and download all modules HERE.
Energy Management
NEW Energy Management Webinar Series
Coalition prepares to launch NEW energy management " Energy Lite " webinar series
Thanks to funding from Ontario's Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO), the Coalition is proud to announce the development of Energy Lite, a series of 14 one-hour webinars covering the most relevant topics of interest to today's proactive energy and building management professionals. Look to Energy Lite for:

  • subject matter experts sharing in-field concepts
  • case studies demonstrating sound business case methodologies
  • tool kit and guidance documents
  • targeted networking opportunities for those in smaller, more remote communities
  • knowledge-sharing awareness collateral

Dates: May 20-21, 2020

To learn more about learning objectives, course curriculum and module sponsorship opportunities, please contact OR visit

We encourage you to share your energy management success stories with us to incorporate into training modules.
Minimizing Coronavirus transmission through hospital mechanical and plumbing systems
Steps to consider include isolation rooms, HEPA filtration, UV lights, increased humidity, use of 100 percent outside air, and keeping hot water systems balanced and flowing.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends placing a patient who has an infectious disease, such as coronavirus (COVID-19), in an airborne infection isolation (AII) room. An AII room is provided with a minimum of 12 air changes per hour, all of which are exhausted directly to outside. The room is also kept at a negative pressure, meaning that the corridor air is pulled into the room and then exhausted, further protecting the safety of others in the hospital. The CDC recommends the most serious patients, ones that may undertake aerosol-generating procedures, should be the highest priority for admission to AII rooms. More HERE .
RETScreen responds to COVID-19
Because of sudden COVID-19 events, many professionals and students are now required to work from home. We have received numerous requests for self-study material on the RETScreen Clean Energy Management Software. The best place to start is our free eLearning channel on YouTube. The channel is set up for users to view videos top to bottom, left to right. Click HERE to access the channel.

This channel has over 65 videos and cover all aspects of RETScreen Expert, including the benchmark, feasibility, performance and portfolio analysis modules. There are step-by-step videos for energy efficiency, clean power and cogeneration feasibility analysis. We have recently added new step-by-step videos for the performance analysis module, including measurement and verification (M&V). There is also a section dedicated to videos prepared in collaboration with our large global user community; these videos cover topics such as M&V, the healthcare sector, municipalities and user tips & tricks.

Our eLearning videos will not only help you develop skills in using RETScreen but also broaden and deepen your knowledge of energy management and clean energy. Access to the videos is completely free. All videos are available in French, and a selection of videos are also available in Spanish and Chinese. In these unprecedented times, RETScreen Customer Support remains fully available through  LinkedIn  or by  e-mail .

Visit the Coalition's web portal at
Sustainable Facilities
Retrofitting Hospital Workers Co-operative: A TowerWise Case Study
From 2014-2018, retrofits were undertaken at Hospital Workers Co-operative to improve the energy efficiency of the building. This case study describes the energy efficiency retrofits that achieved major reductions in utility costs and carbon emissions for this 132-apartment building.
The retrofit demonstrated retrofits can provide a compelling return on investment while reducing environmental impacts and generating green jobs. Some key results include:
  • $82,888 annual utility cost savings
  • 157 tCO2eq emissions savings annually
  • 37 per cent reduction in domestic hot water gas use
Download case study HERE.
CALL for Submissions
Canadian Healthcare Facilities - Summer/Numéro d’ete 
Deadline for Submissions: Friday June 5, 2020  
The Summer issue of CHES's Journal, Canadian Healthcare Facilities (CHF), will once again highlight CHES member success stories related to the theme of the 2020 CHES National Conference: Enriching Patient Experiences by Optimizing the Environment. In addition, with the global COVID-19 pandemic and outbreak spreading nationwide, we are looking to include stories from CHES members about what their teams and facilities have done and continue to do to prepare for the surge of sick patients and protect existing patient populations.

If you are interested in sharing a story, you are encouraged to contact the Journal's editor, Clare Tattersall, at  with the proposed topic and a brief description (2-3 sentences) of the focus.

APPEL à comunications
Canadian Healthcare Facilities - Numéro d’ete
Date limite pour les soumissions : vendredi 5 juin 2020
L’édition estivale de la revue de la SCISS, Canadian Health Facilities (CHF), soulignera une fois de plus les succès des membres de la SCISS relatifs au thème du Congrès national 2020 de la SCISS : Optimiser l’environnement pour améliorer l’expérience-patient. Dans le cadre de la pandémie mondiale de la COVID-19 et de sa flambée sur l’ensemble du pays, nous souhaitons également inclure des récits de membres de la SCISS concernant les actions entreprises par leurs équipes et leurs établissements et mises en œuvre de manière suivie pour se préparer à l’afflux de personnes malades et protéger les populations existantes de patients. 

Si partager une anecdote vous intéresse, nous vous encourageons à contacter le rédacteur en chef de la revue, Clare Tattersall, à , pour préciser le thème proposé et décrire brièvement son idée-force en deux ou trois phrases.
We want your ZEV success stories
If your hospital or LTC home has adopted zero-emissions vehicle technologies, we want to hear your story. Possibly even profile you and brag about your successes. Please email us at
GHS Deadline Extension...
The spread of COVID-19 has accelerated to the level of a national emergency and we know you as health care workers are doing your best to battle against the virus for the sake of us all.
THANK YOU for everything you are doing!

In an effort to try and relieve some of the pressure on your time, we are extending the deadline  for the current Green Hospital Scorecard (GHS) program survey until July 1, 2020. 

  Have you started your submission yet? 

Click here   to access this year's survey, which collects information for 2018 (January – December). If your organisation has multiple sites, a separate survey is required for each site. Please coordinate with your in-house team to ensure only one survey per hospital site is submitted.
After opening and saving the survey, you will be emailed a unique link that will allow you to resume and edit your survey. Hospitals with multiple sites should open a new blank survey for every site by   re-clicking HERE
Educational Webinar
The Coalition hosted an educational webinar to review the GHS survey and answered questions on how to submit your data. This webinar reviewing various sections and GHS updates can be viewed   HERE
Submission deadline - EXTENDED:  July 1, 2020

Participation in the Green Hospital Scorecard is FREE. To help cover program delivery costs we encourage all participants to become members of the Coalition. For membership details, contact Dan at .

The Coalition looks forward to sharing results from this year's GHS survey and we hope you are staying safe and supported during these times.
A BIG thank you to for their continued financial support for the Ontario Green Health Care Award and the Ontario Energy Behaviour Award
Climate Change Resources
The Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care has the resources you need to help your facility take action on climate change. Learn more HERE .
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the following events have been CANCELLED/POSTPONED

CCGHC - Circular Economy Webinar #2 - Postponed

CleanMed 2020 (May 12-14, 2020) - Cancelled

CHES Ontario Confereence (May 31 - June 2, 2020 Windsor) - Cancelled
Circular Economy Webinars
Canada's health services sector is poised to become a major influencer in helping change our traditional linear extraction and waste-based consumer economy into a new, functional circular economy which supports the maximum extraction of value from every item before being systematically and judiciously reinvented and/or regenerated at end of life. Are you prepared to do your part?

Webinar #2 POSTPONED until further notice
The Circular Economy Imperative: How Philips is introducing new business models to benefit health care and the environment
DATE: Wednesday April 15, 2020
We wish to thank Philips Canada for their generous support of Webinar #2 and this collaborative learning initiative.
Electric/Zero-Emissions Vehicle Webinars
Lead the Charge - Guide to Workplace Charging 
Take this webinar to learn:
  • The status of the current Electric Vehicle (EV) market
  • Why workplace charging is so important
  • The benefits of investing in workplace charging 
  • Key considerations for implementation and how to assess demand and capacity
  • Lessons learned through case study examination

Click HERE to register for April 30, 2020 11:00 am webinar

Used EV 101 
Take this webinar to learn:
  • The financial and environmental benefits of Electric Vehicles (EVs) 
  • Key considerations when purchasing an EV
  • Understanding EV charging public and private
  • Lessons learned through case study examination
  • How Plug'n Drive's Used EV and Scrappage Program works

Click HERE to register for Used EV101 - April 28, 2020 4:00 pm webinar

Attend this webinar and you will be eligible for our  Used EV Incentive  and  Scrappage Program  for up to a $2000 rebate.
CHES 2020 Awards - Call for Nominations & Grant Submissions
Deadline for Submissions: April 30, 2020
CHES is seeking nominations for the 2020 Awards. Members are reminded to nominate a deserving member or facility for one of these prestigious awards today!

Hans Burgers Award for Outstanding Contribution to Healthcare Engineering
Wayne McLellan Award of Excellenc e in Healthcare Facilities Management

CHES is also seeking booth sponsors and candidates for the 2020 Young Professionals Grant. The application forms for Sponsors and Candidates are available on the  CHES Website .
Prix 2020 de la SCISS – Appels à mises en candidature et demandes de subvention
Date limite des soumissions : 30 avril 2020
a SCISS est à la recherche de candidatures pour ses Prix 2019. Il est rappelé aux membres qu’ils peuvent dès aujourd’hui proposer la candidature d’un membre méritant ou d’un établissement performant pour l’un de ces prix prestigieux !

Prix Hans Burgers pour contribution exceptionnelle à l’ingénierie des services de santé
Prix d’excellence Wayne McLellan en gestion des établissements de santé

/ La SCISS est également à la recherche de commanditaires et de candidats concernant la dotation 2019 pour jeunes professionnels. Les formulaires de candidatures pour commanditaires et candidats sont mis à disposition sur le site Internet de la SCISS.
CHES Ontario Conference
Engineering Sustainable Healthcare Facilities
May31-June2, 2020
Caesars Windsor
CHES 2020 National Conference
September 20-22, 2020
Halifax Convention Centre
Halifax, NS

Enriching Patient Experiences by Optimizing the Environment
The online booking form for booths at the CHES 2020 National Conference is now available.
We encourage you to submit your contract to exhibit as soon as possible to ensure space is available.
Remember to ask about being placed in the CHES National Conference Green Park where participating vendors have goods and services with a clear environ mental advantage to Canada's health service sector.

See you in Halifax!
CHES 2020 Webinar Series

Online Registration is open for the 2020 Webinar Series.  
Wednesday May 20, 2020 - An Overview of Smoke / Fire Doors and the 2015 NBC 
Speaker:  Ben Coles, M.Sc.E., MBA, P. Eng., PE
Wednesday June 17, 2020 - Optimizing Design with Virtual and Mixed Reality (AR/VR)
Speaker:  Daniel Doherty, BTech, C.E.T., CM BIM
Wednesday October 21, 2020 - CSA Z317.13-17 Role of the Multi-Disciplinary Team - Pros and Cons
Speaker:  Wayne Stokes, CET arch, FMA, RPA
Wednesday November 18, 2020 - Awareness / Update on Med Gas Qualified Operators
Speaker: Roger Holliss

Visit the website for more details as they become available or to register!    
Organ Donation - The Ultimate Recycling
Have you registered as an organ donor?
 Contact your local organ donation agency and speak to your family about your wishes. You have the power to save and transform lives. Or visit the Government of Canada website to register and donate.

Click HERE to learn how RETScreen Expert software can help your organisation quickly analyze cost savings, feasibility and emissions reductions.

If you have inspirational greening stories or photos to share with Green Digest readers, please send them to Kent at
The Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care is Canada’s premier green health care resource network, leading the evolution of green in Canada’s health sector as a national voice and catalyst for environmental change.  
Some articles referred to in the Digest make reference to services and/or product offerings from specific suppliers. The CCGHC recommends that readers research the service and product offerings available through a wider range of suppliers for comparison purposes and in keeping with public sector purchasing guidelines. These articles should not be interpreted as an endorsement of any product or service.