MA hospitals go green

Like their peers in other cities, Boston, MA-area hospitals are planning a wave of new construction. This time around, the hospitals are going "green," creating environments that conserve energy, avoid the use of irritating materials and soothe anxious patients. For example, Brigham and Women's Hospital is building a $352 million, 136-bed cardiac care center featuring such environment- and patient-friendly features as large windows which admit more natural light and a white roof to deflect heat. Also, planners won't use glue, paints and sealants in construction, avoiding fumes that these materials can generate. This type of construction can cost one to seven percent more than more traditional methods, but planners say that a green hospital can slash energy usage by 30 percent. More importantly, executives believe that a more tranquil green environment can improve outcomes and cut patient stays.

To learn more about Boston's green building plans:
- read this piece from The Boston Globe