NFPA approves new versions of Life Safety Code®, NFPA 99

Hospital Safety Insider, June 23, 2011

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Last week, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) approved new versions of NFPA 101, Life Safety Code® (LSC), and NFPA 99, Standard for Health Care Facilities. The votes took place at the NFPA’s Technical Meeting, which was held after its 2011 Conference and Expo in Boston. The 2012 editions of each standard are expected to be published officially in the next few months.

A listing of proposed Tentative Interim Amendments (TIA) made to NFPA 99 was published in the June issue of NFPA News. The TIAs would add new chapters on plumbing and heating, ventilation, and air conditioning to the 2012 edition of NFPA 99. Public comments on the amendments are due by July 20; comments can be emailed to The NFPA Standards Council will consider the comments before voting on the TIAs at its meeting on August 9-11.

Once the 2012 editions are published by the NFPA, The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and The Joint Commission are expected to follow suit and adopt the 2012 editions. Currently, both require hospitals to comply with the 2000 edition of the LSC. The most recent edition of the LSC was published in 2009.

It could take up to 18 months before CMS adopts a newer edition of the LSC. Once that happens, The Joint Commission, Det Norske Veritas, and the Healthcare Facilities Accreditation Program will also adopt it, and then accredited hospitals must comply with the new requirements.

Visit the NFPA’s Conference blog for more information on the votes and see the upcoming issue of Healthcare Life Safety Compliance for details and analysis of these actions and what they’ll mean for your facility.

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