The Joint Commission (Oakbrook Terrace, Ill.) announced a voluntary Sustainable Healthcare Certification (SHC) program for U.S. hospitals, effective Jan. 1, 2024.

The SHC program, available to Joint Commission accredited and non-accredited hospitals and critical access hospitals, provides a framework to help organizations begin or expand their sustainability practices and decarbonization efforts. It includes setting priorities and governance for sustainability initiatives, creating baselines to measure three sources of green house gas emissions, and developing an action plan to reduce them.

The Joint Commission also has launched an online Sustainable Healthcare Resource Center that includes key strategies, tools, literature, videos, and links to help organizations in their sustainability efforts.

Hospitals can begin working toward certification immediately and apply for certification on the program’s formal launch date. More information and a pre-application form is available here.