Covenant Health is working on plans to update aging stairways, after a toddler fell down concrete steps – through the railing.

More than a week ago, on Thursday, October 25, the family of Tim and Teri Kantor were at the Misericordia Hospital – after Teri gave birth to a son.

There to meet the family’s newest addition was 2-year-old MacLayne, along with her other siblings and a cousin.

Tim and the children decided to go to the gift store in the hospital, and took the stairs after discovering the elevators had been closed for renovations.

They were heading back to Teri’s room, with treats in hand, when the incident happened.

“MacLayne had a piece of candy, and she dropped it,” Tim Kantor said.

Kantor said when his daughter reached down to pick it up, the unthinkable happened.

“She fell back, and went right through the railing to the second floor steps.”

The older boys went to get help, while Tim stayed with his little girl, who was crying on the steps where she landed.

MacLayne spent a few hours in the Emergency Room, but only suffered a few bumps and bruises and was released.

Both parents were shocked such a thing could happen inside a hospital.

“It’s a hospital, it’s supposed to be safe,” Teri Kantor said.

However, the hospital was built in the 1960s, and the railings in the stairwell are original.

Current code states the space between railing spindles should be no wider than 100 millimetres.

Covenant Health has promised to improve the stairs, for now, mesh will be installed to the railing to reduce the risk of falls – and officials are working on a long-term plan.

“So we’re basically going to be updating to a current standard,” Truman Severson, with Covenant Health, said.

Severson said until this incident, the railings were not seen as something that needed upgrading – but the little girl’s fall was a wake-up call.

With files from Susan Amerongen