NHS: Buildings

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 29th January 2020.

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Photo of Steve Reed Steve Reed Shadow Minister (Education) (Children and Families)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether it is his Department's policy that the cladding systems used on buildings throughout the National Health Service estate are required to have passed a BS8414 test.

Photo of Steve Reed Steve Reed Shadow Minister (Education) (Children and Families)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many buildings in the National Health Service estate have High Pressure Laminate cladding.

Photo of Edward Argar Edward Argar Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

The safety of patients, visitors and staff has always been the top priority of the National Health Service. Guidance on fire safety is provided to the NHS through the Health Technical Memorandum (HTM) 05 series - Firecode.

The BS 8414 test methods were developed by the British Standards Institute in conjunction with the Building Research Establishment and they evaluate whether a cladding system subject to fire breaking out of an opening (such as a window) in an external wall, will result in excessive fire spread via the outside of the building and the potential for fire to re-enter at a higher level. The BS 8414 test and associated pass/fail guidance represents one route by which cladding systems may be judged as meeting the necessary standards in certain circumstances. However other means of demonstrating compliance with the required standard may be equally valid. Cladding systems used in the NHS should meet the requirements of the Building Regulations.

Fifteen NHS buildings are currently understood to have High Pressure Laminate cladding and these are being reviewed to determine their specific situation.

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