Three patients from the World Trade Center explosions were treated at Stamford Hospital, near the New York state line early Tuesday afternoon, as Yale-New Haven Hospital prepared to receive overflow victims. But by late Tuesday New York officials said they would not need to send patients to New Haven.
All state hospitals had been placed on alert and had emergency personnel ready in the event their aid became necessary.
Early Tuesday afternoon, workers at Yale-New Haven set up stretchers and other emergency equipment outside the facility in preparation for overflow victims from New York.
Despite the preparations at Yale-New Haven, no disaster victims were treated at city hospitals.
“Yale-New Haven has been told somewhat officially not to expect any patients tonight and probably not to expect any at all,” said Jim Moore, the city’s deputy emergency management director.
Connecticut Hospital Association spokesman Ken Roberts said most Connecticut hospitals have activated disaster plans in case their services are needed.
“State hospitals usually have several levels of emergency response, and in this case we are dealing with an external disaster,” Roberts said. “We will stand by ready to help in whatever way we can.”
Gov. John Rowland has called for emergency medical personnel to help if needed, and that the state’s Red Cross has a two-and-a-half day supply of blood to help treat victims. Paramedics were ready at Connecticut train stations to aid injured people who might arrive by train.
Stamford Hospital spokesman Scott Orstad said the three patients the hospital treated were not seriously harmed, but the Federal Emergency Management Agency told the hospital to prepare for the worst.
“The hospital has been put on high alert by FEMA and is prepared to receive patients and victims, and act as a morgue if necessary,” Orstad said. “We have an active disaster plan to handle situations like these.”
The first two patients admitted at Stamford Hospital Tuesday afternoon, a man and a woman both in their 40s, arrived by train and were released after being treated for smoke inhalation, Orstad said. The third patient, a Stamford woman in her 50s, was treated for eye irritation later in the day and was also released.