Table 2.

Building sustainability into quality improvement (‘SusQI’): intended benefits

QI elementSustainability contentIntended benefits
1 Setting goalsSustainability as a domain of quality; relationship to other domainsNew motivation to contribute to QI, energy for change
2 Studying the systemUnderstanding environmental and social resource use / impacts; carbon hotspots in the NHS; ‘seven capitals’ matrixHighlights wastes and opportunities which are often overlooked; stimulates radical thinking
3 Designing the improvement effortThe Centre for Sustainable Healthcare principles of sustainable clinical practice (prevention, patient empowerment and self-care, lean systems, low carbon alternatives)a – drivers and process changesDirects towards highest value improvements, future proofing
4 Measuring impact / return on investmentTriple bottom line / sustainable value equation; measuring carbonDrives sustainable change; allows benefits to be communicated to broader audience, not exclusively regarding financial cost-benefit
  • aFrom Mortimer et al, 2010.12 QI = quality improvement