Written Answers. - Mid-West Emergency Hospital.

36.

asked the Minister for Health if he will indicate the hospital in the mid-west area which is the emergency hospital to cater for an aircraft disaster such as happened in England recently; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

The Mid-Western Health Board will respond to any major emergency within its area of operation in the context of the board's major emergency plan. The health board's designated hospitals in the event of a major emergency are the Regional Hospital, Limerick, Nenagh General Hospital and Ennis General Hospital. St. John's Hospital, Limerick, and St. Nessan's Orthopaedic Hospital, Croom, are supporting hospitals which, when notified, will receive casualties from the accident scene and will accept a transfer of patients from the designated hospitals. Decisions as to which hospitals will receive casualties are made by the medical co-ordinating officer in the light of the circumstances prevailing at that time.

Other hospitals in the board area have their own basic procedures to deal with a major accident if it occurs in the immediate vicinity of the hospital.

In addition, the emergency plans of the local authorities, and Garda are designed in such a way as to mesh in with the health board plan. It is the combination of the plans of each of the services which forms the overall major emergency plan.

The plans are kept constantly under review in the light of ongoing developments and relevant experience either at home or abroad.