Why does a Care Home need engineering cover?
If an organisation owns or operates work equipment there are various legal obligations they must comply with. This applies to Care Homes in regards to any lifts, personal hoists and any other equipment you may use while caring for your service users. Regular engineering inspections will help ensure that both statutory requirements and general health and safety duties are met.
Operating dangerous, unsafe or defective equipment will inevitably lead to accidents, which can result in injuries to both your staff and your service users. This can lead to costly liability claims and in many cases create the risk of criminal prosecution for individuals and their organisations. In many instances, inspections are required by law, so conducting them is essential for avoiding prosecution. However, even when inspections are not specifically mandated, owners and operators still have an overarching legal duty to manage risks in the workplace and to ensure equipment is safe to use. Regular inspections are considered an implicit requirement to demonstrate sensible risk management practices. This is supported by the Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) approved codes of practice, industry standards and manufacturers recommendations.
What kinds of equipment in your Care Home require inspection?
- Passenger / goods lifts
- Stair lifts
- Bath hoists
- Personal hoists
- Wheelchair lifts
- Hot water heating boilers
- Steam boilers
- Dumb waiters
This is not an exhaustive list and the Health and Safety Executive will consider the primary use of equipment to determine whether it legally requires inspection.
Engineering insurance for your care home
As well as covering your legal requirements for inspections, a comprehensive engineering policy will also cover your equipment for sudden and unforeseen damage including breakdown from internal defects, accidental damage by extraneous cause and any damage caused to the surrounding property caused by the explosion of any pressurised equipment. It may also cover the costs involved in hiring replacement equipment should yours need to be sent off for repairs.