In 1999, the NH Department of Environmental Services Pollution Prevention Program (NHPPP) partnered with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the NH Hospital Association's (NHHA) Foundation for Healthy Communities, to undertake a project promoting the reduction of mercury in healthcare facilities. The NH Hospital Project involved on-site assistance at participating facilities, setting up an infrastructure to promote continuous environmental improvement, and outreach and training activities.
Concurrently, in 1999, the healthcare mercury project partners constructed a survey for hospitals to use in assessing mercury practices and usage. The comprehensive questionnaire included policies, devices, recycling practices, and more. The purpose of completing this survey was to help hospitals assess how much mercury was in their facilities.
In 2001, NHPPP tracked the progress of hospitals that participated in the 1999 survey and contacted those hospitals that did not. The project included the following; created a new, short e-mail survey consisting of approximately 5 standard questions and 5 specific questions, and created a web page summarizing new results and comparing them to the 1999 survey results.
Sources of Mercury in Healthcare Facilities
Mercury is found in a variety of chemicals and equipment commonly used in healthcare facilities. Good alternatives exist for almost all of these following products. Contact your vendors or NHHA. For a partial list, try the Sustainable Hospitals web page.
Get Involved! Actions To Reduce Mercury in Healthcare Facilities
NHPPP realizes that hospitals are not the only healthcare facility trying to reduce sources of mercury, but all healthcare facilities including, but not limited to, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, day clinics, physicians offices, and hospice care centers. This web page provides examples of actions and projects you can undertake in your healthcare facility to reduce source of mercury.