Addington Hospital. Picture: Independent Media
Durban - Patients at Addington Hospital had to once again use the stairs because its lifts were broken.

The Independent on Saturday visited the 16-storey hospital and found that none of the front passenger lifts was working, with frustrated patients having to use the stairs.

A notice posted on the doors of the lift said construction on the motor room was under way after it had been damaged by heavy rains.

Noluthando Nkosi, spokesperson for the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health, said the lifts had not been working since Tuesday after heavy rains on Monday.

“Water ingress into the lift motor room has caused major damage to the lift main control system, the motor drive, and the motors,” she said.

“The lifts that are not functioning, experienced extensive damage and require major repairs, which are ongoing. It should be noted that the service lifts for medical supply, food and waste removal are all functional.”

In August, patients had to be transferred to nearby hospitals after the lifts malfunctioned for more than a week.

Nkosi said the 140-year-old building was feeling the effects of ageing and overpopulation.

“This infrastructure is at times susceptible to the elements. To overhaul it would require a complete shutdown of the hospital, and massive financial resources, both of which the department currently cannot afford.”

Nkosi said the department apologised for the inconvenience and that the government was moving away from building high-rise hospitals like Addington.

Independent On Saturday