Kaiser Permanente, a US-based health care provider, has launched a Sustainability Scorecard that will allow the company to evaluate the sustainability of each medical item it purchases while also encouraging suppliers across the industry to provide greener products for the health care sector.

The company has said that it will require suppliers to provide environmental data for $1bn worth of medical equipment and products used in its hospitals, medical offices and other facilities.

Dean Edwards, vice president and chief procurement officer of Kaiser Permanente, said: “Kaiser Permanente recognizes we can improve health today and for the future by taking a close look at the products we purchase. With Kaiser Permanente’s size and influence, the work we’re doing is continuing to move the industry.”

Kaiser Permanente’s current environmental policies already provide environmental guidelines for products ranging from greener cleaning chemicals to IV tubing free of potentially harmful chemicals.

The Sustainability Scorecard goes further by requiring suppliers to provide information on their company’s environmental commitment, use of potentially harmful chemicals in their products and information about product and packaging recycling, the company said.

Kathy Gerwig, vice president for workplace safety and environmental stewardship officer at Kaiser Permanente, said: “Kaiser Permanente is continually working to find environmentally friendly products, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and inform public policy to protect the health and safety of our workforce and members alike.

“With our Sustainability Scorecard, we are strengthening the link between sustainability and health.”