Downpour causes leaks at Kota Kinabalu hospital including occupied operating theatre

Leaks could be seen in multiple spots at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, while photos of staff trying to mop dry the inundated floors were also shared online. — Picture via Facebook
Leaks could be seen in multiple spots at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, while photos of staff trying to mop dry the inundated floors were also shared online. — Picture via Facebook

KOTA KINABALU, May 17 — Torrential rain yesterday caused chaos at a public hospital here after leaks appeared in multiple locations including one operating room being used for surgery while the exterior was also flooded.

A video of the leaks at Queen Elizabeth Hospital is making its rounds on social media, which Sabah Health director Dr Christina Rundi confirmed as authentic.

She said that there were leaks at the hospital but the issue was resolved soon after.

“Yes... water was dripping as seen in the video due to overflow of water into the floor above. Now there is no more water drips and affected areas are being cleaned,” said Dr Rundi, adding that no operations or patients were affected.

In the clip, leaks could be seen in at least three spots while photos of staff trying to mop dry the inundated floors were also shared online.

When asked about plans to avoid a repeat, Dr Rundi said action would be taken but did not elaborate.

“Definite measures will be taken to prevent future similar occurrence,” she said.

A Facebook post on a page called “Pemerhati KKM” said that yesterday’s heavy rain exposed the hospital’s conditions.

“This is completely unacceptable and shameful.

“Imagine the risk if water drips from the ceiling into an open surgical wound?” the poster wrote.

The person added that the information was not to criticise health officials but to highlight the condition of the healthcare infrastructure nationwide to the Health Ministry.

The poster asserted that the upkeep and provision of basic facilities were being ignored in the pursuit of “new fangled systems”.

However, the writer said that allocations to Sabah were inadequate compared to other states, which hampered the health department’s ability to function properly.

“Contractors and maintenance companies need to be removed and changed as it is obvious that they have failed. We need to be honest and transparent in admitting the faults we have and take prompt action,” the post added.

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