Representing estates and facilities professionals operating within the  



New guidelines for fire safety

The Department of Health has published a new Health Technical Memorandum that sets out recommendations and guidance for the management of fire safety in healthcare buildings.

However, the department cautions: “It should not be quoted as if it were a specification, and any claims of compliance should be carefully examined to ensure they are not misleading.”

“While Heath Technical Memoranda 05-02 and 05-03 provide guidance in respect of the fire precautions and protective measures appropriate for healthcare premises, this Health Technical Memorandum is intended to assist in determining the appropriate fire safety management system to be applied to
healthcare organisations,” it says.

The memorandum sets out guidance that recognises the nature of healthcare organisations and the need for a robust system of fire safety management. The
guidance and recommendations contained in the memorandum are designed to
allow the current statutory regulations to be “applied sensibly within a framework of understanding”.

The DH says: “The primary remit of NHS organisations with regard to fire safety is the safety of patients, staff and visitors.” Because of this,  for all premises under their control, NHS organisations will need toselect and effectively implement a series of measures to achieve an acceptable level of fire safety,
taking into account:

?    All relevant legislation and statutes;
?    The guidance in the new Health Technical Memorandum;
?    The relevant guidance contained in other parts of Firecode; and
?    The advice and approval of building control and fire and rescue authorities

The memorandum can be found online at: