§ MR. LABOUCHERE (Northampton)
I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board whether he has received complaints from public vaccinators with reference to the effect of the glycerinated calf lymph supplied from the 167 laboratory of the Local Government Board, and what action he proposes to take in the matter; whether his attention has been called to the decision of the magistrates in Derby, who have dismissed summonses against defaulters under the Vaccination Act in consequence of the prosecutions not having been sanctioned by the guardians; and whether, under these circumstances, he will reconsider his position in respect of the powers of vaccination officers to institute proceedings without this sanction.
§ MR. T. W. RUSSELL
The Local Government Board have received many statements as to the satisfactory results of the glycerinated calf lymph issued by them, but during the present hot weather there have been some communications as to want of uniformity in the results obtained. There is reason to believe this want of uniformity is largely due to some change which the lymph has recently undergone owing to the great variation between the temperature at which it is kept in the laboratory and that to which it is exposed after issue. The occurrence, which is believed to be temporary only, is receiving very careful investigation with a view to its prevention. My attention has been called to the decision of the Derby magistrates referred to in the second paragraph. The magistrates do not seem to have had before them the circular issued by the Board to the guardians, in which it was explained that the power and the duty of taking such proceedings are vested in the vaccination officer under the Vaccination Acts passed prior to the Act of 1898 without any order of the Board or direction from the guardians, and they appear to have given their decision under a misapprehension. I see no reason for reconsidering the position in respect of the powers of vaccination officers to institute proceedings.
§ SIR WALTER FOSTER (Derbyshire, Ilkeston)
I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board, whether his Department has been able regularly to meet the demand for glycerinated calf lymph during the past half year; whether the demand has increased from month to month; whether the public vaccinators have been satisfied with the efficacy of the lymph supplied; and, whether he is likely at an early date to be able to supply the 168 lymph for the use of private practitioners.
§ MR. T. W. RUSSELL
The reply to the first paragraph is in the affirmative. It was originally estimated that a supply of 1,000 tubes of lymph would meet the requirements of public vaccinators, but the demand steadily increased, until in: one week it reached 2,287 a day. During the last two months the daily issue has averaged 1,790 a day. I have replied to the third paragraph in the answer I have given to-day to the question put to me by the lion. Member for Northampton. I cannot at present make any promise as to the supply of the lymph for the use of private practitioners.