Jefferson Healthcare has earned a score of 97 in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program. The program’s score for hospitals applies to general medical and surgical hospitals, including critical access hospitals. Expressed as a number on a 1-to-100 scale, the score rates performance on a percentile basis. Higher scores mean better energy efficiency, resulting in less energy use and fewer greenhouse gas emissions.
Facilities Director Chris O’Higgins has devoted his six years and his staff’s time to increasing energy efficiency at Jefferson Healthcare’s main campus, off-site clinics, and administration buildings. It is an ongoing process of systematically replacing inefficient systems like air handlers and other large equipment with more energy-saving units, including a total LED retrofit of the lighting system.
“This is the result of a decade-long commitment to increasing operating efficiency and improving our carbon footprint,” said Mike Glenn, CEO of Jefferson Healthcare. “Each year Chris identifies the most important infrastructure improvement projects to tackle and we make sure they are included in our capital budget. We’ve made a lot of progress over the years, yet still have work to do,” he added. “I don’t think Chris is going to rest until our score reaches 100.”
New Washington state law mandates energy efficiency compliance by 2027. O’Higgins set a goal to become Energy Star rated in two years, well before the compli- ance deadline. The purchase and installation of Energy Star equipment is now part of the organization’s efficiency process, along with completing the retrofit of hospital lighting to LED lighting by the end of 2022. Looking ahead, O’Higgins said he would like Jefferson Healthcare to become the most sustainable organization on the peninsula.