HC Deb 18 March 1902 vol 105 cc330-1

I beg to ask the First Lord of the Treasury, in view of the action taken by Foreign Governments in the matter of research into the cause, cure, and prevention of cancer, is the Government now prepared to consider the advisability of the appointment of a Commission for the purpose of determining how research respecting this disease can best be stimulated.

MR. ARTHUR LEE (Hampshire, Fareham)

I beg at the same time to ask the First Lord of the Treasury if he can now state whether the Government is prepared to extend financial assistance to the forthcoming inquiry into the causes and cure of cancer.


My view remains that this subject, important as it is, can best be dealt with by private, though not unorganised, enterprise. I am told that, the Royal College of Physicians and the Royal College of Surgeons have appointed a Joint Committee to consider how investigation into the possible cure of cancer can best be carried on, and I have received communications from the President of the Royal College of Physicians and from other quarters which lead me to believe that their efforts will be successful, and that the scientific staff which they have at their command, and the liberality of the public, will enable a really important scientific investigation into this subject to be undertaken and carried through. In those circumstances I think it would be very unwise for the Government to intervene in a matter which, after all, Governments are not in the habit of conducting with very great success from a scientific or public point of view.