Healthcare and medical research hub is first hospital to receive Global Sustainability Assessment System Operations certificate
Sidra Medicine, a member of Qatar Foundation (QF), has been awarded with a Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS) Operations certificate for its buildings by the Gulf Organisation for Research & Development (GORD).
As part of the GSAS Operations assessment, all facilities within Sidra Medicine – including the main hospital, outpatient clinic, district cooling plant and surrounding outdoor facilities – were thoroughly evaluated in terms of operations and maintenance. Upon the completion of the necessary audits by sustainability experts from GSAS Trust and GORD Labs, and through the efforts and commitment to sustainability of Qatar Foundation’s (QF) City Operations team, Sidra Medicine’s operations achieved an overall GSAS Operations score of 2.07 which corresponds to a PLATINUM certification rating.
Recognizing the achievement, Dr. Yousef Alhorr, Founding Chairman of GORD said, “Sidra Medicine is a stellar example of how world-class healthcare facilities can also demonstrate ace green credentials in post-occupancy phase.”
Stressing the importance of ecofriendly operations within the health sector, Dr. Alhorr added, “Climate-conscious operational practices can benefit all types of projects but their impact on healthcare facilities can be even more worthwhile. The delicate nature of the medical field calls for extreme diligence to ensure responsible disposal of hazardous and non-hazardous waste, efficient ventilation to prevent infections, clean indoor air quality for occupants’ wellbeing, and system optimization to support resource-intensive infrastructure. Sustainable building operations can address all these challenges, all the while saving significant operational costs.”
Group photo of the facilities teams from Sidra Medicine and QF with GORD Chairman
To achieve the PLATINUM rating, Sidra Medicine and QF’s City Operations team went through several site audits and desk reviews for evaluation against six GSAS categories, namely energy performance, indoor environment, waste management, facility management, water performance and environmental policy and awareness. Processes undertaken to calculate these parameters included thermal imaging analysis of the building envelope; energy and water labelling; indoor environmental quality analysis; and techno-commercial analysis of the energy saving opportunities.
Mr. Hamad Al Kuwari, Executive Director of City Operations, QF, said: “Sustainability has always been an integral part of our vision at Qatar Foundation, and Sidra Medicine is one of the leading buildings in this field – from the sustainable architectural design of its main building, its outpatient clinics which reflect the positive effects of natural lighting, and a lighting system that meets both quality and renewable energy requirements. It embodies sustainable standards in a place which provides a healthy, comfortable environment for visitors to Sidra Medicine.”
“Being the first hospital to obtain the GSAS Operations certification with a PLATINUM rating from the Gulf Organisation for Research & Development is an achievement that reflects QF’s commitment and leadership in promoting sustainability and the rationalization of energy and water consumption. This will motivate us to move further along the path of sustainability through the management of all our facilities at QF.”
Mr. Mohammed Salam, Chief of Corporate Services – Sidra Medicine speaking at the GSAS Award ceremony at Sidra Medicine on World Environment Day
Mr. Mohamed Salem, Chief of Corporate Services said: “Sidra Medicine is the first ever hospital to receive a Global Sustainability Assessment System Operations certification with a platinum rating and also the first hospital central plant to be operationally certified with an energy efficiency label by the Gulf Organization for Research and Development. This achievement is a strong showcase of both Sidra Medicine and Qatar Foundation’s commitment to operating our beautiful facility to the best possible sustainable standards; an approach that will also keep us in line with Qatar Foundation’s sustainability goals as well as the Qatar National Vision 2030.”
“Being able to operate a facility such as ours efficiently and with a platinum as well as energy rating means that we are optimizing our energy and water consumption and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. This also has a positive impact on enhancing the comfort and well-being of everyone within this facility – staff, patients and their families. We hope that Sidra Medicine will be a benchmark for other hospitals across the Middle East region in terms of operating in an energy efficient manner,” continued Mr. Salem.
For effective control and monitoring of energy and water systems, Sidra Medicine’s buildings and facilities are connected to its own on-site district cooling systems offering efficient HVAC system and automated Scada systems. Its district cooling plant was also assessed using GSAS Aracadia SuiteTM for energy efficient operation and its operating compliance was checked against the District Cooling (DC) regulations in the State of Qatar. The plant, which is managed by QF’s City Operations team, also received an Energy Center Efficiency Label from GORD.
Sidra Medicine’s operational environmental impact was assessed based on the ways in which facility operators can mitigate negative climate impact. The landscape surrounding the facility features native and adaptive species of plants, that help reduce the water consumption required for irrigation. Additionally, its indoor environmental quality, waste and facility management practices were assessed and found to be in line with industry accepted practices. Demonstrating efficient waste management, waste accumulated from various facilities within the buildings are segregated at the source for responsible disposal and recycling.
Sidra Medicine is the latest facility to be certified by GSAS, which is MENA region’s first green building certification system that assesses and guides projects on reducing their environmental footprint during design, construction and operations stages. In this context, GSAS Operations program delves into the impacts of building operations in post-occupancy phase. It is premised on the notion that building operations and maintenance practices have a direct impact on the natural environment as well as the economy and human health. Therefore, GSAS Operations aims to reduce the environmental impact of the existing buildings while also improving the health and wellbeing of its occupants. The GSAS Operations certification is valid for four years from the date of issuance.