Global action on leadership in sustainable healthcare

12 Dec 2022, Bertrand Levrat (HUG), Ronald Lavater (IHF) Sonia Roschnik (GSC) meeting with Dr Tedros (WHO).
Wednesday, December 14, 2022

The international drive to reduce the healthcare sector’s contribution to global carbon emissions and accelerate the transition of hospitals to low-carbon healthcare is gaining momentum, thanks to the International Hospital Federation (IHF), the University Hospitals of Geneva (HUG), and the recently launched, Geneva Sustainability Centre (GSC).

‘As a member of the IHF, the Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association (AHHA) is able to collaborate with and learn with other healthcare leaders from around the world on key issues for our members’, says AHHA Chief Executive Kylie Woolcock and IHF Governing Council Member.

‘This includes sustainable healthcare delivery.’

‘We have seen particularly over the last year in Australia, that climate change is already having an impact on health outcomes. And we can learn from international organisations such as the IHF and the HUG, who are leaders on the global stage around climate action and moving towards carbon neutrality. We can also contribute to the international evidence base and provide leadership through the expertise we have here in Australia.’

Founded in early 2022, the Geneva Sustainability Centre has been established with support from the IHF and HUG, with the goal to provide the knowledge, skills, and resources to transition to climate-resilient healthcare, providing crucial support to leaders in the healthcare sector at varying stages on their journey to sustainability.

Last week on Friday, 2 December, in a meeting with the World Health Organisation (WHO), IHF CEO Ron Lavater spoke with Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO, and Dr Maria Neira, Director, Department of Environment, Climate Change and Health, at the WHO headquarters in Geneva, where he underlined the need for global leadership on sustainability within the healthcare sector. 

Dr Tedros and his team were briefed on the IHF’s Geneva Sustainability Centre (GSC) and its focus on building the capacities of hospital leaders to lead their institutions in an environmentally sustainable way.

‘The IHF, like the WHO, understands the impact of climate change. But we are only beginning to address the healthcare sector’s contribution to the problem,’ said Mr Lavater.

‘At the IHF, our members agree we need to raise awareness and act now, to manage our hospitals and health systems in more sustainable ways.’

The Geneva Sustainability Centre provides an opportunity to guide hospital leaders worldwide on climate action.


The Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association (AHHA) is the independent peak membership body and advocates for the Australian healthcare system and a national voice for universally accessible, high-quality healthcare in Australia. AHHA is a member of the International Hospital Federation (IHF).

Media enquiries: Kylie Woolcock, Chief Executive, AHHA
0410 625 830