Improvements to fire safety will have to be made at the Cumberland Infirmary, after an Enforcement Notice was issued by the fire service.
Concerns were raised by the North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust, about the PFI building.
Namely, that fire proofing materials were not up to the 60-minute protection standard that allows safe evacuation, and prevents fire from spreading to the rest of the building.
Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service has now inspected the building, and issued the Enforcement Notice.
The Trust has put several safety measures in place this week:
- 24-hour fire watch in all areas of the hospital
- Patrols throughout the hospital throughout the day, until all alarms are tested
The Trust blames its PFI Partner, which it says is ultimately responsible for improvement works.
It says it asked the PFI Partner to apply for planning permission to build three temporary wards for patients while remedial works are carried out.
But it says the PFI Partner did not make an application, and the Trust has now had to submit one itself.
Jim Mackey, chief executive at Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, North Cumbria’s buddy trust and acquisition partner, has been equally critical of the PFI Partner: