fbpx

Asbestos in Hospitals – The Real Problem?

Acorn offers a comprehensive suite of asbestos consultancy services from asbestos air testing and asbestos surveys to removal management, and UKATA accredited training. We solve all your asbestos challenges swiftly to save you time, costs and stress.

Future-proof your business today, with innovative asbestos management, compliant to the most extensive of regulations.

Secure a Fast, No Obligation Quote Today

Let us know what asbestos support you need, and our expert team will promptly send you a free, no-fuss quote tailored to your requirements!

Asbestos is a hazardous substance, and the effects that it can have on the human system are well known to be carcinogenic. With that in mind, asbestos has been removed or made safe from public places to protect people from it. However, it has recently been brought to the attention of the public that hospitals in the London area may not be as safe from this hazardous material as was initially thought. Asbestos in hospitals – The real problem.

There’s asbestos in hospitals in the London area?

Now, you would initially think that a hospital, which is a place where sick people are treated and cared for, would be nothing but the safest place possible, to ensure that both the patients in there do not become any worse than is necessary, or that the people who are caring for them are also protected from any risk or illness or injury. However, it has come to light that a very worrying 94% of hospitals in London contain asbestos within the building. Around 5,000 people die per year from asbestos related diseases, and seven of those in the last year have been reported to be doctors and nurses.

The official report from the government is that many of the structures which make up hospitals used by the NHS come from an era when the asbestos was much more widely used, although if left undisturbed, the substance is considered safe. However, leading experts have described the situation as being something which will eventually get out of hand, likening it to a ‘time bomb’.

Asbestos in hospitals

Is this a problem for people in hospitals?

The fact that there is so much asbestos in hospitals is a concern. Asbestos is a material which can be very dangerous for people to be in close contact with, if the material is not in a good condition. Asbestos materials in a poor condition can release asbestos fibre, which can become airborne. Once airborne they can be inhaled by the occupants. This can create problems later in life as the fibres can sit undetected within the body for many years. This exposure can lead to developing asbestos related diseases.

Overall, the fact that many hospitals have asbestos materials present within them is a very worrying discovery. The fact people enter hospitals in sometimes a vulnerable and ailing condition can only be compounded if they are potentially exposed to these hazardous materials. Additionally, to this, workers including doctors, nurses and hospital staff within these buildings are at a greater risk of exposure whilst working.


If you would like assistance in identifying and managing your asbestos risk with an asbestos survey call us on 0844 818 0895 for free and impartial advice.

Neil Munro

I work in a dual role at Acorn Analytical Services focused primarily on growing and leading the business from our Northampton office base. My focus is on overseeing all sales, marketing and financial activities from Northampton. I assist clients with high-level asbestos management strategies and training. Together with Ian Stone I host our weekly podcast – Asbestos Knowledge Empire and I'm Co-author of Asbestos The Dark Arts and Fear and Loathing of Health and Safety.

More Asbestos Articles

Blog 4 - house Acorn Jan 2020 Low Res-96

Common asbestos materials in domestic properties

When people think about asbestos, they often associate it with larger buildings such as warehouses, schools, hospitals and factories. Often, people do not think about asbestos when it comes to homes, but asbestos was heavily used in parts of the domestic market and used on large scales within local authority homes. In this blog, we …

Read MoreCommon asbestos materials in domestic properties

hot conditions

Working with asbestos in hot conditions

You don’t normally think of the combination of asbestos and heat as a concern. Asbestos is resistant to heat – that is one of the reasons it was used in building projects. However, in this blog, we are not talking about the use of asbestos, we are talking about asbestos removal projects and how heat …

Read MoreWorking with asbestos in hot conditions

listed building

Asbestos and Listed Buildings

Buildings of historic importance, that were constructed centuries ago, were not built with asbestos. Whether you’re talking about castles or smaller old listed properties they were built before we started using asbestos in construction. What we will consider in this blog is what may have happened to those buildings after their original construction. In short, …

Read MoreAsbestos and Listed Buildings

Asbestos disposal

Asbestos disposal – New and exciting methods

In this blog, we are talking about some exciting developments with regards to the disposal of asbestos. We recently went to a conference in Birmingham which was attended by lots of people from our industry. Delegates shared new techniques, best practice and innovations and there were a lot of interesting seminars. One of the seminars, …

Read MoreAsbestos disposal – New and exciting methods

Label asbestos

Do you need to label asbestos?

As an experienced multi-disciplined asbestos consultancy we are regularly asked by clients if they need to label their asbestos. There is a misconception that asbestos has to be labelled but this is not the case. You don’t actually have to label asbestos but you do have to manage it. In my mind, it is good …

Read MoreDo you need to label asbestos?

PVA asbestos

PVA as an encapsulant

In this blog we are talking about PVA as an encapsulant of asbestos. PVA stands for Polyvinyl Acetate and is a glue-like substance, best known as a wood glue, white glue or school glue. It is a safe glue and doesn’t burn your skin. It is easily washable and is water based. It used to …

Read MorePVA as an encapsulant

Non licensed contractor

What you need to know about non-licensed asbestos contractors?

We recently had a query from one of our clients that we wanted to share with you in this blog. They are a contractor working in the commercial and retail sectors and occasionally they have to remove bolts from floors which may contain asbestos. Their query was about wearing the correct PPE (personal protective equipment) and RPE (respiratory protective equipment) to carry out the work safely. …

Read MoreWhat you need to know about non-licensed asbestos contractors?

Asbestos Emergencies

Asbestos emergencies – what to do?

In this blog we will discuss asbestos and emergency situations. We will look at what can go wrong, who can be affected and how to control and minimise risks from those situations. Who is at risk? To begin with we need to consider who is at risk of coming into contact with asbestos. It comes down to a list of people …

Read MoreAsbestos emergencies – what to do?

Asbestos Insulating Board

Asbestos insulating boards and the problems with their removal

Asbestos insulating boards are boards that have a high asbestos content usually containing Amosite (Brown) and can also contain Chrysotile (White) asbestos. When you look at an unpainted board you can see the asbestos fibres. The boards can be easily damaged and can easily release asbestos fibres. They tend to be off white or grey …

Read MoreAsbestos insulating boards and the problems with their removal

What does asbestos look like

What is asbestos?

This is a question we get asked a lot. But, for the purposes of this blog, we think it is worth exploring what asbestos isn’t. Firstly, there is a big misconception that asbestos is man-made, but that’s not the case. The shortest and easiest way to describe asbestos is that it is a mineral which …

Read MoreWhat is asbestos?