To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many patients in Northern Ireland have been waiting for neurosurgery admission to hospital for longer than (a) three years, (b) five years and (c) seven years. 
Information from the Royal Group of Hospitals showing the number of persons waiting for neurosurgery admission to hospital at the end of April 2003 is presented in the table.
|Years waiting||3–4||5–6||1 +|
|Number of persons waiting||132||29||12|
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many patients in Northern Ireland have been awaiting initial neurosurgery outpatient assessment for longer than (a) 12 and (b) 18 months. 
At the 31 December 2002, 14 people had been waiting between 12 and 17 months and four people had been waiting 18 months or more, for a first outpatient appointment in the neurosurgery specialty.
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what action he has taken to increase the recruitment and training of nurses to work in neurosurgery in Northern Ireland. 
I refer the hon. Lady to the answer given to the hon. Gentleman for Belfast, South on 11 March 2003, Official Report, column 194W (Question ref. 102036).
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland of those awaiting neurosurgery hospital admission, how many patients are considered (a) emergency and (b) clinically urgent cases. 
Information from the Royal Group of Hospitals indicates that at the end of April 2003 there were (a) 57 patients considered as emergency and (b) 84 patients considered as clinically urgent.