More than 80,000 chemicals are used in commerce today, and only a small fraction have been tested for effects on human health. There is growing evidence that environmental exposures to some chemicals contribute to cancer, asthma, reproductive disorders and other health conditions.
To address these health concerns, Kaiser Permanente has integrated a robust set of purchasing standards into its product sourcing processes that include criteria for safe chemicals and sustainable waste disposal.
Safer Products Goal:
By 2025, we will increase our purchase of products and materials meeting environmental standards to 50 percent.
Our current progress:
- Eliminated triclosan and triclocarban from soaps, lotions and sanitizers.
- Eliminated PVC and DEHP from IV solution bags.
- Prohibited the purchase of building products containing PVC in resilient flooring, carpet and carpet backing, cove bases, corner guards, wall protection, handrails and bumper guards, perimeter edging on tables, signage (vinyl lettering), and above-ground piping.
- Prohibited the purchase of fabric, furniture, finishes and building materials containing fluorochemical additives or treatments.
- Prohibited the purchase of fabrics, furniture and finishes containing added anti-microbial agents in all large projects.
- Prohibited the purchase of upholstered furniture containing chemical flame retardants.
- Received EPEAT Awards for excellence in the procurement of environmentally preferable electronic equipment for four consecutive years.
- Conducted studies that found that exposure to BPA could cause harm to human reproductive health and increase the risk of obesity in children.