§ MR. JOHN DEWAR (Inverness-shire)
I beg to ask the Lord Advocate whether the Secretary for Scotland is aware that the Medical Officer for Health for Inverness-shire in his report recently issued calls special attention to the fact that during the last ten years there have been as many as 3,967 uncertified deaths in the county; and that during last year eighty deaths were registered in the parish of Duirinish, of which fifty-one were uncertified by a medical attendant; that in Kilmuir forty-seven deaths were registered, of which thirty-three were uncertified; and that in South Uist, of eighty-five deaths registered, fifty-seven were uncertified; and, that taking the entire county, nearly 400 persons were buried during the year whose deaths had not been certified by a member of the medical profession; and whether, in view of these facts, the Secretary for Scotland will introduce legislation on the subject so soon as opportunity offers in order to remedy these conditions.
§ THE LORD ADVOCATE (Mr. A. GRAHAM MURRAY, Buteshire)
The answer to the first paragraph of the hon. Member's question is in the affirmative. As I stated the other day in reply to the hon. Member for Ross-shire, a medical certificate of death is not a necessary condition of burial in any part of Scotland, and the Government are not at present prepared to legislate on the subject.