Asbestos in Shropshire's hospitals 'no danger' – shropshirestar.com

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But hospital bosses insist it poses no danger and that buildings have been given a clean bill of health.

It comes amid claims by a group of specialist solicitors that the substance presents a ‘serious risk’.

In a Freedom of Information request carried out by Dedicated Accident Solicitors, all responding NHS trusts stated that the asbestos was managed and was of no risk to patients or staff.

They found some trusts have already had to pay out large sums to compensate those who have been exposed.

Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust said no hospital employees or patients had pursued a claim against it for exposure to asbestos within the trust’s hospital buildings.

And it stressed that asbestos poses no risk as long as it is not disturbed.

Both Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and Princess Royal Hospital were recently inspected in November, December and January as per the annual re-inspection programme.

The inspections found all materials were in a satisfactory condition with the exception of a few materials at RSH in ceiling voids. A program of minor remedial work is being undertaken out to encapsulate them.

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Julia Clarke, director responsible for health and safety at The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust, said: “Parts of our estate were built in an era when asbestos – which is considered safe when left undisturbed – was commonly used.

“We regularly inspect our buildings and robust systems are place to ensure we provide a safe environment for staff, patients and visitors.

“Whenever building work is carried out in areas where asbestos is present, experts are bought in to properly and safely dispose of it.”

John Das, director at Dedicated Accident Solicitors and an asbestos disease specialist, said: “It is when asbestos fibres are inadvertently disturbed that they risk endangering those who come into contact with them.

“Asbestos is lethal and even low levels of exposure to asbestos fibres can cause cancer of the lining of the lung, called mesothelioma, an incurable illness with a very poor outlook.

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