St. Mary's Hospital

Missionary Hospital | South Africa

Hospital description

St Mary’s Hospital is a 200-bed, level one district hospital, situated on the outskirts of Durban, in the Mariannhill Mission Complex, which was established by a group of Trappist Monks in 1882. Several of the monks were healers and it soon became clear that medical care was needed in the community. The monks appealed to women in their home parishes in Europe to assist and five women responded. They formed the foundation of the Missionary Sisters of the Precious Blood, the order of nuns that still owns the Hospital today.
During the Spanish Influenza epidemic of 1918, it became apparent that the three mud huts that were used as a “hospital” were woefully inadequate and fundraising plans were implemented to build a modern hospital, which was completed in 1927.

As word of the hospital spread and the numbers of patients grew, so grew the need for skilled nursing staff, and in 1933, St Mary’s Nursing School opened its doors, the beginnings of a facility with a reputation for training some of the finest nurses and midwives in South Africa. Although the Hospital is still owned by the Missionary Sisters of the Precious Blood, the day-to-day running has been handed over to a Trust. The Hospital is one of the two remaining Catholic Mission Hospitals in South Africa and the only one that functions in the public health arena.


Hospital type Missionary Hospital
Local language ZULU, Some staff and patients speak English
Funding Status Unknown


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