As Mercury Rises, Health Ministry-NDMA Issues Joint Advisory To States On Measures To Prevent Hospital Fires

As Mercury Rises, Health Ministry-NDMA Issues Joint Advisory To States On Measures To Prevent Hospital Fires

New Delhi, March 24 (TNA) As temperatures soar during the summer months, hospital fires become a significant threat. To prevent this, the Union Health Ministry and the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) have issued a joint advisory to all States/UTs underscoring the paramount importance of proactive measures in preventing such devastating incidents.

State Health Departments and State Disaster Management Authorities have been directed to work in close collaboration to ensure that all accredited hospitals within their jurisdiction take immediate action on the following:

Thorough Inspections: Conduct comprehensive fire safety audits / on-site inspections of all hospitals to assess fire safety compliance. Ensure that fire-fighting systems, including fire alarms, fire smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, fire hydrants, and fire lifts, are present and fully functional.

Electrical Load Audits: Address the critical issue of insufficient electrical load capacity. Hospitals must regularly conduct electrical load audits, particularly when adding new equipment or converting spaces into ICUs. Any identified discrepancies must be promptly rectified.

Hospitals must strictly adhere to regulatory requirements and obtain valid fire No-Objection Certificates (NOCs) from their respective state fire departments. Prioritize re-calibration of electrical loads in older buildings constructed before adopting fire safety norms.

A detailed set of instructions outlining the steps and measures to be undertaken by hospitals to ensure fire safety compliance has also been provided to the Chief Secretaries of all States and UTs, recommending they disseminate the information among all accredited hospitals.

Functional Fire-Fighting Systems: Hospitals must regularly inspect fire-fighting equipment such as fire extinguishers, hydrants, and alarms. This includes checking the expiry dates of extinguishers, ensuring hydrants are accessible and have adequate water pressure, and that fire alarms are operational and audible throughout the facility.

The News Agency