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28 1947



Preliminary and General.

Short title.

1. —This Act may be cited as the Health Act, 1947.


2. —(1) In this Act—

the expression “adult person” means a person who is sixteen years of age or older;

the word “advertisement” includes every form whatsoever of recommendation of any thing to the public, including, in particular—

(a) the statement of the name of such thing or of any brand, trade description or designation by reference to which such thing is sold, where such statement may reasonably be regarded as a recommendation of such thing to the public,

(b) the statement of any properties of such thing on a label, container or wrapper used for such thing or in a leaflet, circular, pamphlet or brochure issued to the public or on request or given to a purchaser of such thing,

and cognate words shall be construed accordingly;

the word “aircraft” has the same meaning as it has in the Air Navigation and Transport Act, 1936 (No. 40 of 1936);

the expression “chief medical officer” means a county medical officer for a county or a city medical officer for a county borough;

the word “child” means a person who is less than sixteen years of age;

the expression “coastal waters” means waters within a distance of three nautical miles from any point on the coast measured from low-water mark of ordinary spring tides;

the word “disinfestations” means the cleansing and protection of any person or thing from vermin;

the expression “district medical officer” means a medical officer of health under section 73 of this Act;

the word “dwelling” includes—

(a) a part of a house, and

(b) a temporary dwelling;

the word “enactment” includes any order or regulation made under an Act;

the expression “health authority” means a council of a county or a corporation of a county borough;

the expression “health institution” means an institution maintained by a health authority pursuant to section 10 of this Act;

the expression “infected premises notice” means a written notice that, within the three months immediately preceding the giving of the notice, a person has been residing in or has occupied specified premises while suffering from a specified infectious disease;

the word “infectious” includes contagious and the word “infection” includes contagion;

the expression “infectious disease” means primarily any disease included in regulations under subsection (1) of section 29 whether absolutely or by definition of a particular stage of such disease, but in any section of Part IV of this Act from the application of which a disease or a stage of a disease is excluded under subsection (2) of the said section 29, the expression does not include such disease or such disease in such stage, as the case may be;

the expression “institution” means a hospital, sanatorium, maternity home, convalescent home, preventorium, laboratory, clinic, health centre, first-aid station, dispensary or any similar institution;

the expression “institutional services” includes—

(a) maintenance in an institution,

(b) diagnosis, advice and treatment at an institution,

(c) appliances and medicines and other preparations,

(d) the use of special apparatus at an institution;

the expression “the manager” means—

(a) as respects a health authority which is the corporation of a county borough—the manager for the purposes of the Acts relating to the management of the borough, and

(b) as respects a health authority which is the council of a county—the manager for the purposes of the County Management Acts, 1940 and 1942;

the expression “medical officer of health” means a chief medical officer, an assistant county medical officer for a county, an assistant city medical officer for a county borough or a district medical officer;

the expression “the Minister” means the Minister for Health;

the word “parent” means, in relation to a child, the person having the legal custody of the child and, where owing to the absence of such person or for any other reason the child is not living with or is not in the actual custody of such person, includes the person with whom the child is living or in whose actual custody the child is;

the word “prescribed” means prescribed by regulations made by the Minister under this Act;

the expression “public conveyance” includes a conveyance available for private hire;

the expression “sanitary authority” has the same meaning as in the Public Health Acts, 1878 to 1931;

the expression “the school manager” means in relation to a school or college, the person for the time being managing the school or college;

the expression “temporary dwelling” means any—

(a) tent, or

(b) van, or other conveyance (whether on wheels or not), or

(c) shed, hut or similar structure, or

(d) vessel;

the word “vermin” means any insects, being bugs, fleas, lice or itch mites, and includes the eggs, larvæ and pupæ of such insects, and the word “verminous” shall be construed accordingly;

the word “vessel” includes any ship, boat, barge or lighter.

(2) (a) For the purposes of this Act, the functional area of a health authority shall include any coastal waters adjoining such functional area.

(b) Where any coastal waters adjoin the functional areas of two or more health authorities, the Minister may by order provide that for the purposes of paragraph (a) of this subsection the whole or a specified part of the coastal waters shall be regarded as adjoining the functional area of any one of such health authorities, and the said paragraph (a) shall have effect accordingly.

(3) A reference in this Act to contravention of any provision includes, where appropriate, a reference to contravention of that provision by failing or refusing to comply therewith.


3. —This Act shall come into operation on such day or days as, by order or orders made by the Minister under this section, may be fixed therefor either generally or with reference to any particular purpose or provision and different days may be so fixed for different purposes and different provisions.


4. —The enactments mentioned in the First Schedule to this Act are hereby repealed to the extent mentioned in the third column of that Schedule.


5. —(1) The Minister may make regulations in relation to anything referred to in this Act as prescribed.

(2) Regulations under this Act may be so framed as to apply in relation to the whole of the State or to part or parts only of the State.

(3) Where regulations under this Act require records to be kept in relation to the health of individuals, such provision shall be made therein as the Minister thinks necessary or proper for ensuring that the parts of such records containing the names of such individuals shall be treated in a confidential manner and shall not be published save with the consent of such individuals.

(4) No regulation which includes provision in respect of a payment to be made to or by the Minister shall be made by the Minister under this Act without the consent to such provision of the Minister for Finance.

(5) Every regulation made by the Minister under this Act shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas as soon as may be after it is made and, if a resolution annulling the regulation is passed by either such House within the next subsequent twenty-one days on which that House has sat after the regulation is laid before it, the regulation shall be annulled accordingly but without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done thereunder.

Continuation of existing regulations.

6. —Every regulation which was made under an enactment repealed by this Act and which was in force immediately before such repeal shall, upon and after such repeal, be deemed to be a regulation made under the appropriate section of this Act and shall have effect and be capable of being amended or revoked accordingly.

Revocation or amendment of order made by the Minister under this Act.

7. —Every power conferred by this Act on the Minister to make any order shall be construed as including a power to revoke or amend any order made under such power and to make another order in lieu of any order so revoked.

Collection and disposal of moneys payable to the Minister.

8. —(1) All moneys payable under this Act or any regulations made under this Act to the Minister shall be collected and taken in such manner as the Minister for Finance shall from time to time direct and shall be paid into or disposed of for the benefit of the Exchequer in accordance with the directions of the said Minister.

(2) The Public Offices Fees Act, 1879, shall not apply in respect of any moneys payable under this Act or any regulations made under this Act to the Minister.

Expenses of the Minister.

9. —The expenses incurred by the Minister in the administration of this Act shall, to such extent as may be sanctioned by the Minister for Finance, be paid out of moneys provided by the Oireachtas.