BCAB #1598 - Accessibility for Washrooms within Patient / Resident Rooms, Sentence 3.8.2.26.(1)

March 17, 2004 (revised June 23, 2004)

BCAB #1598

Re: Accessibility for Washrooms within Patient / Resident Rooms, Sentence 3.8.2.26.(1)

Project Description

The subject is a hospital / health care centre, classified as a care and detention occupancy, Group B, Division 2. Within some patient / resident rooms there is an "en suite" washroom which includes a watercloset and vanity unit. The layout, fixtures and accessories (grab bars) of these washrooms comply with Ministry of Health guidelines, but do not meet all the design criteria of Article 3.7.4.8. The occupant load of facility exceeds 150 persons. Required accessible washrooms have been provided for the floor areas outside the patient's rooms.

Reason for Appeal

Article 3.8.2.25. and Article 3.8.2.26 require that care facilities shall have accessible washrooms conforming to Sentence 3.8.2.3.(2) serving each area to which persons with disabilities are provided access. Sentence 3.8.2.3.(2) states where the occupant load of the building or occupancy exceeds 150, other washrooms in the floor area required to be accessible shall conform to the design criteria of Sentences 3.7.4.8.(2) to (8).  Sentence 3.7.4.8.(12) states in patient areas in Group B, Division 2 occupancies, location of fixtures and height grab bars are permitted to be different from those required by Sentences 3.7.4.8.(2) to (11).

Appellant’s Position

The appellant contends the Code does not require washrooms in patient / resident sleeping rooms to be accessible, as they are considered additional facilities or features as suggested in the Building Access Handbook. The appellant considers by providing accessible facilities in washrooms outside of the patient / resident sleeping rooms, the accessibility requirements of the Code are being met.

Building Official's Position

The Building Official considers that the Code's design criteria for accessible washrooms is applicable to all the washrooms in the floor area, including those located within the patients sleeping rooms.

Appeal Board Decision #1598

It is the determination of the Board, based on the wording of the Code, that washrooms serving the patient sleeping rooms are required to comply with provisions of Sentences 3.7.4.8.(2) to (8). The Board is aware that the intent of this Article is different than the Code’s wording, and has been informed by the Ministry that the Building Code’s wording will be reviewed for amendment to reflect the intent.

George Humphrey, Chair