The healthcare sector is a large producer of greenhouse gas emissions and environmental pollution and we urgently need evidence-driven solutions to address the resulting health impacts of health system functioning. Life cycle assessment (LCA) is a tool used to quantify the environmental emissions of a product or process. It is used to estimate the greenhouse gas emissions from medical devices and procedures to aid in strategically decarbonizing health care. LCA literacy and competency is crucial in developing the evidence base to guide solutions in reducing the healthcare industry’s carbon footprint and is essential for anyone considering a career in sustainability, as LCA can be a valuable tool in managing the performance of a health organization.
This course will provide an introduction into the use of life cycle assessment in the healthcare sector and will provide mentorship for participants to perform their own desired LCA study through the duration of the course.
Training Co-Director: Cecilia Sorensen, MD, Associate Professor, Environmental Health Sciences at the Columbia University Irving Medical Center. Dr. Sorensen is the Director of the Global Consortium on Climate and Health Education (GCCHE) at Columbia University and is an Emergency Medicine physician-investigator in the area of climate change and health. She is a member of the Colorado Consortium for Climate Change, a scientific advisor for the Citizens Climate Lobby, and is the course director for the nations' first medical school course on climate change and human health. She also co-directs the National Climate-Health Fellowship program at the University of Colorado, a post-residency training program for physicians.
Training Co-Director: Cassandra Thiel PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Population Health and Department of Ophthalmology at the New York University Langone Health. Dr. Thiel is also a consultant and CEO for Clinically Sustainable Consulting LLC. Her research utilizes life cycle assessment and principles of industrial ecology to analyze and improve the environmental performance of medical systems, hospital design, healthcare practice, and medical technologies.
Matthew Eckelman, PhD, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Northeastern University.
Jonathan Slutzman, MD, Center for the Environment, Massachusetts General Hospital; Emergency Medicine, Harvard Medical School.