On a scale to most , the number and size of healthcare meetings and events dwarfs other sectors. While meeting planners and marketers in the IT and energy sector have undertaken pioneering steps at greening their events, the heathcare sector in general has been left way behind.
It seems ironic that a sector so focused on health in the communities has seemed to place so little focus on health of the planet in their meeting management. Leading economic and scientific gurus clearly state that health is clearly linked to climate change. But then again that is fairly obvious no?
So when are we going to see change?
In the last month I have seen some very interesting signs from some large pharmaceutical companies and healthcare congresses. My question is who will be the first to start a strategic sustainability initiative (i´m not talking about just recycling a few bottles, or printing less). Will we have a Novo Nordisk, Roche or Novartis who will start a campaign that will have an effect like Walmarts sustainability index?
The large pharma companies organise thousands of meetings a year. By translating their CSR principles into sustainable event practices and policies they would significantly accelerate the change happening in the meetings industry around the world.
Perhaps this report by Deloite can share a few clues? Deloite make a fair claim that sustainability is a significant trend that is destined to impact each of the health care industry’s major sectors. It is an imperative that will only grow in importance. Greening concerns more than providing an environmentally safe work environment for employees and promoting responsible business practices among suppliers who contribute to value chains. It is a fundamentally different way to lead and operate an organization.
Come on healthcare – get on the train and sustain your meetings! Less see some action and less conversation please.