Darent Valley Hospital is part of the Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust. The hospital opened in September 2000 and has approximately 463 inpatient beds and specialties that include day-care surgery, general surgery, trauma, orthopaedics, cardiology, maternity and general medicine.
Four trees were planted as part of NHS Sustainability Day 2015, apple, plum, cherry and amelanchier. We planted these in their wildlife garden that was designed in memory of a gardener. As you head out of the rear of the canteen, you now walk past strawberries and other fruits on the way to our fruit trees – a tasty lunchtime stroll.
To celebrate the installation of a new Combined Heat and Power (CHP) energy centre at our busy Darent Valley Hospital, we planted 3 further trees on our NHS Forest site.
We welcomed our local Dartford MP Gareth Johnson and Mayor, Cllr Ian Armitt, to cut the ribbon for the new CHP centre alongside our Chairman Janardan Sofat and Deputy Chief Executive Gerard Sammon. The new energy centre will mean the hospital is producing its own energy and using the waste heat to provide hot water to the Trust. At the flick of a switch, the Trust will be saving a massive 25% in carbon emissions daily, which also directly translates to financial savings across the year that can be ploughed back into patient care.
The opening of the CHP also starts a year of activity focussed on sustainability across the Trust. We planted a further three trees to add to our NHS Forest site that started on NHS Sustainability Day 2015. An information stand, near to out-patients, welcomed staff and visitors to discuss the sustainability issues and challenges facing the healthcare. Staff should keep an eye out for lots of new training opportunities, library publications and supporting events around the topic of sustainability. We are lucky enough to have an active group of employees known as the Green Champions network and would like to sign up everyone who is interested in this subject.
Over the following year, staff from across the Trust will be invited to share their ideas about how resources can be used more efficiently, how waste can be limited and how the environment and our local communities can be considered alongside financial considerations to become a more sustainable Trust. With the help of our dedicated employees, 2016 will be a year that Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust can bring stewardship and leadership to sustainable healthcare, improving the lives of staff, patients, carers and visitors.
On NHS Sustainability Day the trust planted 6 apple trees as part of our 2@2pm campaign.