Award application types


Award applications for different facility types

The Practice Greenhealth Environmental Excellence Awards provide recognition for health care organization members across the achievement spectrum. 

Practice Greenhealth benchmarks three categories of facilities—based on whether they have overnight (staffed) beds or operating rooms within the facility.

  • Facility type 1: Facilities with overnight beds and ORs (typically acute care or critical access hospitals) 
  • Facility type 2: Inpatient facilities without operating rooms, such as long-term care (LTC), psychiatric, orthopedic rehab, and skilled nursing facilities.
  • Facility type 3: Outpatient facilities that may or may not have operating rooms


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Blank versions of the 2021 Environmental Excellence Award applications are available below as PDFs to help department leads familiarize themselves with data gathering for the awards applications. Please note: all applications must be submitted through the electronic awards platform. These PDFs cannot be used for submission.


Partner for Change

  • The Partner for Change application is comprehensive and is designed for health care facilities that have implemented a significant number of environmental programs, and who can demonstrate continuous improvement and expansion of these programs on the path to sustainability.
  • Must provide current year waste, energy, and water data as well as the number of staffed beds, operating rooms and patient days.
  • Must demonstrate the breadth of the program. While some facilities have done outstanding work in one area, this application showcases facilities with a broad set of sustainability programs across different topic areas.
  • Facilities that fill out the Partner for Change application are eligible for a detailed gap analysis session, as well as a benchmark report card.

Download the PDFS of the 2021 Partner for Change Application


Modified Partner for Change

  • The Modified Partner for Change application was designed for facilities that have less capacity to manage the award application process in 2021 due to the pandemic, but are still interested in capturing metrics and showcasing their innovation and successes. The application includes key questions from the Partner for Change application.
  • Must provide current year waste, energy, and water data as well as the number of staffed beds, operating rooms and patient days.
  • Must demonstrate the breadth of the facility’s sustainability programming. 
  • Facilities that fill out the Modified Partner for Change application are eligible for a benchmark report card.

Download the PDFS of the 2021 Modified Partner for Change Application


Making Medicine Mercury Free

The Making Medicine Mercury-Free application evaluates whether a facility has virtually eliminated mercury and has made a commitment to continue to be “mercury-free.” The facility must attach all requested policies and provide documentation to win the award. This award can only be won once.

The facility cannot win the mercury award if it is crushing its fluorescent lamps onsite.

Practice Greenhealth recognizes that there may be small amounts of mercury in the facility that cannot be eliminated at this time (such as mercury in fluorescent lamps), and that other mercury-containing items may be part of capital equipment (such as mercury in boiler switches and relays). 

While these sources of mercury will not disqualify an applicant, there is an expectation that the facility can demonstrate that these sources of mercury are either labeled or being handled appropriately upon disposal. 

Likewise, there is an expectation that minor sources of mercury in the pharmacy or lab are identified and managed appropriately until they can be replaced.

PDF of the 2021 Making Medicine Mercury-Free Award Application


System for Change

This application is designed to help gain recognition at the health system level. The System for Change Award recognizes health systems that are working cohesively to set system-wide sustainability goals, track data, benchmark and share successes in environmental performance.

All hospitals within the health system must be current Practice Greenhealth members in good standing – with a minimum of four facilities.

A minimum percentage of the health system’s facilities must apply using the Partner for Change or Modified Partner for Change applications and achieve recognition in the same award cycle in order for the health system to qualify for this award. The percentage varies by health system size – see below.

Hospitals within the system that do not submit an award application will still count toward the total facility count.

Awards eligibility: Health systems that fill out the System for Change application are eligible to win the System for Change Award.

PDF of the 2021 System for Change Award Application


Number of hospitals in the health system % of facilities that must win Partner for Change or above
4-10 facilities 75%
11-25 facilities 60%
26+ facilities 40%

Practice Greenhealth has adjusted the qualifying thresholds for the System for Change award in 2021, recognizing that some hospitals typically engaged in the work may be unable to participate due to the pandemic. 

Please contact awards technical assistance or call 888-378-2259 with questions about the Environmental Excellence Awards. You can also contact your member engagement manager. VA facilities should first connect with their VISN mentor or email

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