NHS England and NHS Improvement, working alongside Public Health England, sought views from the AHP workforce about a sustainable NHS, and opportunities and barriers to delivering this work. This took the form of a profession-wide survey and conversations with AHP professional bodies and other key stakeholders.
The survey was conducted over eight weeks from June 2020 and attracted nearly 900 responses from across the 14 professions. Responses came from all four UK nations and encompassed a range of different work settings.
AHPs identified several different ways they felt they could contribute to a net zero carbon NHS. Thematic analysis of the response showed five key priority areas:
- Digital healthcare
- Public health and prevention
- Food and diet
- Use of equipment/single use plastics
- Environmental sustainability literacy
The survey results suggest there is a great deal of enthusiasm to engage with the net zero agenda among the AHP workforce. Many AHPs already deliver on this agenda in their work and as leaders within their workplaces. It was also apparent that many AHPs prioritise environmental sustainability in their personal lives but find it more difficult to do so in a health or care context. This is a positive place from which to build our roles as “Greener AHPs”.