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Healthier hospitals thanks to BREEAM

In recent years the Watts Group has become increasingly involved in providing services to the NHS and in particular including advising the hospital sector on energy performance. As a result, Tthe news that a number of London’s leading hospitals are piloting the new BREEAM-in –use scheme for the healthcare sector is very welcome.

As part of the NHS drive for more sustainable buildings and services, St Bart’s and Great Ormond Street hospitals have recently piloted the BRE energy-rating scheme. BREEAM-in-use is designed to help owners, occupiers and building managers reduce the cost-in-use and upgrade the environmental performance of non-domestic buildings. The scheme has now been adapted to meet the needs of the healthcare sector, allowing building users to calculate how energy efficient they are and to identify ways performance could be improved.

Bart’s Health NHS Trust recently took part in the pilot study, putting three buildings through their paces. They scored just under 50% across assessments on the three projects, with the one new-build scoring 63% for occupier management and reaching the ‘very good’ category. At Great Ormond Street, the Octave Bonar wing was assessed to identify potential improvements and benchmark them. The buildings scored an average of 56%.

Both hospitals found the BRE tool easy to use, with Bart’s now incorporating the BREEAM-in-use certification mechanism into its EPC contract specification. At Great Ormond Street, energy manager Brendan Rouse believes BREEAM-in-use “has the potential to allow us to measure the impacts of our different work streams…saving time and avoiding duplication”.

For more information on BREEAM-in-use, go to, email or contact Cullum Alexander at Watts to find out more about our cost-in-use and energy performance consultancy services

The Watts Bulletin is the technical companion to the Watts Pocket Handbook, the essential guide to property and construction, as used by professionals since 1983.

Watts Bulletin editor: Trevor Rushton.