A room in Middlemore Hospital's emergency department had to be closed for a week because of sewageleaking through a ceiling. A pipe blocked in the ceiling last month and sewer water leaked into one of two procedure rooms, a Counties Manukau District Health Board spokeswoman said.
The room was immediately closed for a week for repairs and cleaning, before being reopened.
"While not common, these kinds of blockages do occur occasionally," the spokeswoman said. "The closure did not adversely affect patients."
Board members toured the department in mid-July and one of them expressed concern about the problem, minutes from a Hospital Advisory Committee show.
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The ageing hospital has been plagued by building issues, including weathertightness-related rot and mould, seismic issues, asbestos and sewage leaks.
DHB chair Mark Gosche said after taking over last year that the hospital had simply grown as the community around it had. It was not a purpose-built, brand new hospital and its problems were worsened by rapid population growth, high demand and funding that had not kept up, he said.
The Scott Building, which houses half of the hospital's more than 500 adult acute beds, is currently undergoing remedial works.
Middlemore's emergency department is the busiest in the country, and it has lately struggled to keep up - leading to a fall in the number being seen within the six-hour limit.