Ensuring NHS buildings remain safe and compliant through expert surveyor services

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Date Published

27/09/2021

Reading time

3 mins read

Many public buildings, such as schools and hospitals, are maintained by private companies through private finance initiative (PFI) contracts.

We are helping to ensure those companies fulfil their responsibilities to keep the buildings safe and compliant with the appropriate regulations and standards.

The horror of Grenfell reminded us all of the devastating impact a fire can have, and the importance of maintaining fire safety across both private and public sector buildings.

In November 2017, an acute NHS trust approached us for help to ensure that a building on their acute hospital site - which was currently under a PFI contract - was safe and fit to deliver patient care. They didn’t have the in-house resources to dedicate to the project and needed a trusted partner to support them.

Our team of expert surveyors conducted a thorough assessment of the building and discovered that there were issues with the structural fire protection and the internal safety measures such as the fire alarm system. The external façade of the building also needed to be replaced as a defect failed to comply with legislation.

We fully documented every defect and issue that we identified, and presented our findings to the company that was contracted under the private finance agreement. We then supported the NHS trust throughout legal proceedings to ensure the company carried out the necessary remedial works and paid it compensation.

Our dedicated project team engaged with all the suppliers involved in the remedial works and regularly updated the NHS trust on progress through detailed reporting. We ensured that the works were completed to the agreed timescales and that the buildings could remain open throughout so patient care wasn’t disrupted.

Through our detailed work we were able to reassure the NHS trust and their commissioners and regulators that the premises are safety-compliant and meet legislative standards. However, we didn’t stop there, we’ve continued to support the trust to put control measures in place to ensure they were able to monitor the continuation of the PFI agreement. We are also supporting the substantial financial compensation and remediation work at no cost to the NHS.

To find out more about how we can help to keep public buildings safe and compliant, please contact: localpublicservices@capita.co.uk

PFI contract lifecycle management

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