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Supporting Environmental Sustainability in Healthcare

Posted on Sep 19, 2023 by Colleen Holtkamp

A Vision for Sustainability

Climate change has a negative impact on the environment, which in turn affects human health. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), health consequences linked to climate change include respiratory and heart diseases, pest-related diseases such as Lyme disease and West Nile Virus, water- and food-related illnesses, along with injuries and deaths. 

It has been increasingly recognized that healthcare organizations themselves contribute to climate change. A significant percentage of greenhouse gas emissions come from the healthcare industry. These emissions contribute to global warming, which leads to a rising number of health issues in the population. The cycle perpetuates itself as health systems must provide more patient care, adding to their environmental impact. 

Suppliers to healthcare organizations can contribute to a more sustainable world by supporting their customers’ efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and, at the same time, reducing their own environmental impact. Helmer Scientific is committed to preserving the environment through all aspects of our business. This includes managing our sustainability practices to make a meaningful difference. 


Long-term environmental sustainability is our goal. In our facility this means reducing waste, making effective use of natural resources, and reducing energy consumption. 

For example, Helmer is a zero-landfill facility. All waste is sent to a transfer station where it is sorted and recycled. All batteries, pallets, cardboard, and scrap metal are also recycled. Manufacturing operations produce zero hazardous waste. 

In production, materials are chosen for longevity and recyclability. Manufacturing processes have been adopted that reduce the use of materials such as steel. In addition, our building is designed with features that reduce energy consumption, from HVAC to lighting and faucets. 


Our environmental commitment does not stop with advances in business practices inside our facility. Helmer promotes activities that will reduce the burden on the environment throughout all our processes, including design, procurement, production, sales, distribution, recycling, and disposal. 

Our portfolio of environmentally conscious temperature-controlled devices supports hospitals and clinical labs in their sustainability initiatives. These products support compliance with environmental regulations and adherence to the provisions of official agreements and commitments. 

Developing energy efficient refrigeration technologies such as OptiCool™ and AdvanceCore™ reduces our customers’ energy consumption and lowers the cost of ownership. These technologies also reduce heat output, decrease the carbon footprint, and meet energy standards such as the U.S. Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP), EU F-Gas Initiative, Paris Climate Agreement, and Montreal Protocol. 

Additionally, these systems use natural refrigerants which are environmentally friendly, having no impact on ozone depletion and a very low Global Warming Potential (GWP) grade. 


Helmer Scientific was awarded the Indiana Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence in Pollution Prevention in 2019 and is a member of Partners for Pollution Prevention. We monitor our environmental practices and measure results regularly to support continuous improvement in sustainability.

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Colleen Holtkamp

Written by Colleen Holtkamp

Helmer designs, manufactures, and markets specialized medical and laboratory equipment to customers in more than 125 countries. With an extensive background in Helmer products, Colleen’s focus is on the Clinical Laboratory and Blood Bank segments.

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