Surrey Physio employ 150 staff and every staff member has a role to play. Our valued cleaners use eco-friendly cleaning materials, and reduce the usage of plastic bags and bin liners, as well as received support on recycling. Our managers promote compassionate leadership, and encourage all staff members to take the environment seriously. Our physiotherapists rehabilitate people who are ill, people who have disabilities, and support health in the community. Our IT team have helped utilise battery saving settings on laptops and screens, as well as reducing server load. Our web development team have made code and cron jobs more efficient to reduce server power. Our link workers create local support groups, weight management classes and diabetes support groups. They help people get housing, assist with disability forms, and we volunteer at local food banks. Every member of the team does something to promote benefits to the environment.
In physiotherapy, there are no benchmarks, no industry standards, and no public policy specifically for physiotherapy and social prescribing. When we look at other large physiotherapy groups, we cannot find anyone doing the level of work on sustainability that we are doing. We believe that Surrey Physio Group is the leading green provider in the UK. We can’t compare ourselves to the NHS, but we do align somewhat with the NHS.
Our sustainability efforts are in-line and in some cases improved compared to the NHS strategies in place, for example:
- Digital Health: we align with the NHS view about improving access to clinicians and information through digital health, with our apps Rehab Me and Rehab My Patient. Digital health reduces the need for transportation.
- Water conservation: the NHS has implemented measures to reduce waste water and we’ve done the same.
- Net Zero NHS: In 2020, the NHS became the world's first national health system to commit to becoming carbon neutral. The commitment is to reach net-zero carbon emissions for the NHS by 2040, with an ambition to reach an interim target by 2030. We align with this.
- Green Plan: The NHS has encouraged individual trusts and facilities to develop their own "Green Plans" tailored to their specific needs and capacities. These plans encompass a wide range of actions, from waste reduction to sustainable procurement. As a result, we created our own Green Plan.
- Sustainable Procurement: The NHS has made strides to ensure that its procurement practices are sustainable, considering not just the cost but also the environmental and social impact of the goods and services it buys. We’ve met those requests and needs during contractual processes and tenders.
- Transport: The NHS is trying to reduce very high transport usage. Our staff have reduced transport use and promoted the Cycle to Work scheme.
We plan to become carbon neutral by 2030.
Here are the changes we have adopted:
- Reduce energy consumption - we've replaced lighting to LEDs, turned off equipment when not used, installed air source heat pumps or energy efficient boilers, and insulated our premises.
- Management of Waste - we've reduced waste, asked patients to bring in towels to reduce couch roll use, re-used paper that has not got confidential information.
- Recycling - we've added recycle bins at all premises, and in each clinic room to split paper and plastic. We've asked our team to recycle as much as possible.
- Supply Chain - we've asked suppliers to reduce packaging, reduce plastic, and use recyclable materials. We source locally where possible.
- Consumables - we've swapped plastic cups for paper cups across all sites, and now use refillable bottles. We've stopped using harmful anti-bac spray and wet wipes.
- Digital Care and Support / Telehealth - we've supported 3000 clinics and 50 hospitals to prescribe exercises online! Incredible.
- Green Transportation - we offer cycle to work scheme.