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UCI Health earns a top award from sustainable healthcare organization

Health system also recognized in climate, energy and operating room emissions categories

June 07, 2024
practice greenhealth awards logo reading 2024 practice greenhealth environmental excellence awards in yellow and green letters surrounded by green olive branches

Orange, Calif. — UCI Health has again been recognized for its leadership in healthcare sustainability with the Greenhealth Emerald Award in the annual Practice Greenhealth Environmental Excellence Awards.

The award for Orange County’s only academic health system is an affirmation of its dedication to improving its environmental performance and building sustainability and resiliency into its operations and culture. The competitive honor recognizes the top 20% of applicants.

Practice Greenhealth, a national organization dedicated to environmental sustainability in healthcare, also honored UCI Health in other categories:

  • Two Circle of Excellence Awards in climate and energy, which honor up to 10 of the highest performing hospitals nationwide
  • Greening the OR Recognition Award, honoring organizations that have made substantial progress in reducing the environmental impact of surgery

"This award further confirms the commitment of UCI Health to environmental stewardship and excellence in sustainable healthcare practices," said Chad T. Lefteris, president and CEO of UCI Health.

"Our efforts to integrate sustainability into operations not only demonstrate our responsibility to the environment but also our dedication to the health and well-being of our community. We are proud to lead by example in the transformation of healthcare toward greener and more sustainable practices."

Forefront of sustainability

UCI Health is proud to be at the forefront of healthcare sustainability.

At UCI Medical Center in Orange, the facilities team has transitioned more than 75% of its landscaping equipment from gas-powered to cleaner, quieter battery-powered tools.

In 2025, UCI Health ― Irvine, the nation’s first medical campus to be powered by an all-electric central utility plant, will be fully open. UCI Health is also a participant in the United Nation’s Race to Zero and has pledged to reach net-zero emissions by 2050.

“In a shifting healthcare landscape, a focus on sustainability can help build resilience while better protecting the health of patients and the community,” said Gary Cohen, the founder of Practice Greenhealth.

“UCI Health demonstrates the kind of leadership, innovation, and performance that can drive the entire health sector toward more environmentally responsible practices.”  

About UCI Health

UCI Health is the clinical enterprise of the University of California, Irvine, and the only academic health system based in Orange County. UCI Health is comprised of its main campus, UCI Medical Center, a 459-bed, acute care hospital in in Orange, Calif., four hospitals and affiliated physicians of the UCI Health Community Network in Orange and Los Angeles counties and ambulatory care centers across the region. Listed among America’s Best Hospitals by U.S. News & World Report for 23 consecutive years, UCI Medical Center provides tertiary and quaternary care and is home to Orange County’s only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centerhigh-risk perinatal/neonatal program and American College of Surgeons-verified Level I adult and Level II pediatric trauma centergold level 1 geriatric emergency department and regional burn center. UCI Health serves a region of nearly 4 million people in Orange County, western Riverside County and southeast Los Angeles County. Follow us on FacebookInstagramLinkedIn and Twitter.

About UCI Health — Irvine

UCI Health — Irvine, a new medical complex under construction at the north end of the UC Irvine campus, will bring unparalleled expertise and the finest evidence-based care that only an academic health system can offer to the communities of coastal and south Orange County. As part of UCI Health — which includes the flagship UCI Medical Center in Orange, Orange County’s only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center and multiple outpatient care locations — the new 1.2 million-square-foot campus will offer key clinical programs in oncology, digestive health, neurology, neurosurgery, orthopedics and spine surgery. The nation’s first all-electric, carbon-neutral medical center, UCI Health — Irvine is home to The Joe C. Wen & Family UCI Health Center for Advanced Care, a five-story, 168,000-square-foot medical facility offering the full range of multidisciplinary specialty care for children and adults under a single roof, urgent care services, the Center for Children’s Health and the UCI Health Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders. Opening this summer: The Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center and Ambulatory Care, a 225,000-square-foot facility. Coming in 2025: A seven-story, 350,000-square-foot, acute care hospital.

Media Contact

Sophia Papa