More Asbestos Discovered At Heanor Memorial Hospital

Services To Remain At Ilkeston Community Hospital Following News

26.11.2013

Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Trust has confirmed inpatient care and outpatient clinics provided at Heanor Memorial Hospital are to remain at Ilkeston Community Hospital following the discovery of more asbestos at the site.

All patient services at Heanor except outpatient physiotherapy were relocated temporarily in September after the deadly material was found in the boiler room.

However, the NHS Trust has confirmed a full survey undertaken across the whole hospital site has revealed that the presence of asbestos is more widespread, with findings including asbestos debris and other materials in heating pipework ducts within ward floors.

William Jones, director of operations at Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Trust, stressed that there has been no risk to patients or visitors.

He added: “The extensive presence of asbestos, which compounds the defects previously identified, will make the necessary upgrading of the hospital’s infrastructure – including a new heating system, rewiring, fire alarm systems and telecommunications – more complex and expensive.”

Expert Opinion
While the NHS Trust has stressed that no patients or workers at the hospital have been at risk of asbestos exposure, there will still be many people within the local community who are concerned by the developments.

"It is vital that every effort is made to provide reassurances about the way asbestos has been managed at the site, as well as steps taken to ensure the safe removal of the hazardous material.

"Unfortunately, this scenario is becoming increasingly common with the fabric of many public buildings such as hospitals and schools aging significantly. This can mean that the condition of such sites is deteriorating and lead to asbestos, originally used in the construction process, being damaged or disturbed.

"We would urge NHS Trusts, councils and education authorities to ensure they are fully aware of the extent of asbestos problem in their buildings and ensure it is managed appropriately and safely. Any failings on this issue could have significant health consequences"
Adrian Budgen, Partner