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Jun 13

Fire Door Inspections & Healthcare Facilities

On May 30th, I had the pleasure of attending the DHI First Coast chapter meeting in Jacksonville, Florida.   The speaker was DHI’s CEO, Jerry Heppes Sr,. CAE.

Jerry covered a variety of subjects during his hour at the podium.  I will be writing posts on each subject Jerry covered starting with his first topic:  fire door inspections.   Jerry gave an informative update of the Door Security & Safety Foundation’s progress on promoting the adoption and enforcement of the Annual Fire Door Inspection requirement.

Since the addition of the requirement for annual inspections in the NFPA80 2007 edition, progress to enforce the code has been slow but steady.  As of now, 25 states have adopted the code but not all are actively enforcing it.  There is reluctance to burdening building owners with the considerable costs that could be involved to bring openings compliant during such a slow economy.

iStock_000007199930SmallThe annual inspection requirements have had an enormous impact on health care facilities.  For facilities to be able to accept Medicare/Medicaid patients, they must comply with CMS, Centers for Medicare/Medicaid Services. The CMS, which is responsible for administering the Medicare/Medicaid dollars, will soon be adopting NFPA 80 2007.  The Joint Commission, a non-profit entity that oversees the auditing of HC facilities is also advancing the initiative.

The Foundation continues to reach out to entities across the country and stress the importance of these inspections.  Their current efforts include communications with ASHE, the American Society for Healthcare Engineering.

Jerry shared that his offices used to receive a couple phone calls a year about the NFPA80 change, now the number of calls has increased to a couple times a month.  Proof their efforts are seeing results.  This requirement is not going away and will be strengthened with the 2013 edition.

The current edition states that the inspections are to be performed by a “knowledgeable” person.  The 2013 edition changes knowledgeable to “qualified”.

He touched on the success of the online FDAI course, a perfect segue to his next topic, The Door & Hardware Institute’s many education platforms.  You will learn more about that in my second post.

During the meeting I was nominated and voted in as secretary of the chapter.  Which will lead me to my third post on DHI’s forward thinking approach to the structure of their chapters.   I was intrigued by some of the ideas they are tossing around.  I hope you will stay tuned for more details!

A special thank you to Jerry for attending our meeting and providing such an informative presentation. Your support is very appreciated.

 

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