Irving, TX, June 30, 2022 – Vizient, Inc. joined the Biden Administration for a White House event today with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), where Byron Jobe, Vizient CEO, and industry colleagues pledged meaningful action to decarbonize the health care sector and make health care facilities more resilient to the effects of climate change.
Vizient has committed to meet the Biden administration's climate goal of reducing emissions by 50 percent by 2030 and achieving net zero emissions by 2050 and is already taking steps to reduce its climate impacts. The White House event offers a sector-wide display of cooperation between Vizient, its private sector peers, and federal health systems.
Vizient has worked closely with industry partners to educate and advocate for one sustainability product standard across healthcare organizations, suppliers, manufacturers and group purchasing organizations. Over the past five years, Vizient has provided our list of 23 environmentally preferred product attributes to any organization who requests it including our competitors. Vizient believes if all organizations operate from one common set of guidelines, change will be expedited. Since we began circulating our attributes, two additional group purchasing organizations and hundreds of health systems have adopted the attributes.
"Being a responsible steward of our environment is integral to Vizient's strategy and mission," said Byron Jobe, Vizient president and CEO. "We are committed to helping our member health care organizations increase their adoption of products that are environmentally preferred as they deliver the highest quality care to their patients."
In September 2021, 200 medical journals named climate change the number one threat to global public health. Millions of people living in the United States already experience associated harm —with disproportionate impacts on disadvantaged and underserved communities—through more frequent and intense periods of extreme heat, wildfires, flooding, vector-borne diseases and other factors that worsen chronic health conditions.
The Office of Climate Change and Health Equity (OCCHE), part of HHS under the Assistant Secretary for Health, developed the health sector climate pledge in conjunction with the White House to help focus industry response to climate change. In addition to reducing their carbon footprint, signatories also commit to producing detailed plans to build climate resilience for their facilities and the communities they serve.
The June 30 White House event will include leaders from companies and organizations representing hundreds of hospitals and numerous health centers, as well as pharmaceutical companies, medical device-makers, suppliers and group purchasing organizations. The health care sector accounts for approximately 8.5 percent of U.S. domestic climate-warming emissions.
"Public health decisions have to be based on the realities of climate change, and we all need to do more to make that happen at the national level," said ADM Rachel Levine, the Assistant Secretary for Health. "We're seeing right now what extreme temperatures and more severe storms can do to human health, environmental quality and our physical infrastructure. It's great to see so many different companies and organizations come together to decarbonize and become partners in protecting human health from climate change. Today's announcement is just the beginning of a longer ongoing effort with partners from across the medical sector, which is exactly the kind of big response we need as a country."
For more information about how Vizient is responding to our nation's climate challenges, visit www.vizientinc.com.
About Vizient, Inc.
Vizient, Inc., the nation's largest health care performance improvement company, serves more than 50% of the nation's acute care providers, which includes 97% of the nation's academic medical centers, and more than 20% of ambulatory care providers. Vizient provides expertise, analytics and advisory services, as well as a contract portfolio that represents more than $130 billion in annual purchasing volume. Vizient's solutions and services improve the delivery of high-value care by aligning cost, quality and market performance. Headquartered in Irving, Texas, Vizient has offices throughout the United States. Learn more at www.vizientinc.com.
About the Office of Climate Change and Health Equity
The Office of Climate Change and Health Equity (OCCHE) plays a vital role in protecting the nation's health from climate change-related risks, including extreme heat, natural disasters, vector-borne diseases and more. OCCHE is looking forward to providing technical supports to companies that wish to reduce their environmental impact and become more resilient to the impacts of climate change,setting national health goals and objectives and supporting programs, services, and education activities that improve the health of all Americans. OCCHE is part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. To learn more about OCCHE visit https://www.hhs.gov/ash/ocche/index.html.