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28 April 2014 | Gurjit Degun
Staff at NHS Supply Chain have received training to raise awareness of government buying standards for food and catering, timber and palm oil and ethical procurement and labour standards.
The newly published NHS Supply Chain’s Sustainable Development Report also found that between 2012 and 2013 the organisation worked to train procurement staff on the energy efficiency of medical devices. The organisation said 40 members of the procurement team have recieved training so far.
The body also introduced compliance with UK timber procurement policy into the framework agreements for office furniture, and ward and residential furniture.
The report added the organisation is now managing more than 70 suppliers through the NHS Supply Chain Labour Standards Assurance System, which assists suppliers to embed systematic approaches to labour standards management in their supply chains.
Other achievements noted in the report include an improvement in its carbon efficiency by a third and the recycling of more than 7,200 tonnes of waste since 2008.
In terms of ethics and responsibility, the report said more than 50 suppliers are working with NHS Supply Chain to improve hospital food; and small and medium-sized businesses represent half of the body’s suppliers.
NHS Supply Chain said: “By working closely with suppliers and gaining a greater understanding of customer needs, NHS Supply Chain is able to reduce the impact of the healthcare supply chain on the environment, and drive ethical procurement, bringing real benefits to customers at the same time.”
CEO Nick Gerrard added: “This report reinforces that NHS Supply Chain has an important role to play in delivering sustainable value to the NHS and in helping NHS customers to realise opportunities for sustainable development throughout procurement and logistics.”