HC Deb 16 January 1913 vol 46 cc2251-2
59. Major HOPE

asked whether the right hon. Gentleman's attention has been called to the meeting of the Argyllshire Insurance Committee on 10th January, when it was resolved that the circumstances of the county were such that the panel system, worked at its best, would not give a complete and satisfactory medical service, and that it should be represented to the Insurance Commissioners that a large Treasury Grant was necessary for Argyllshire in order that insured persons might receive proper medical treatment; and whether the probable necessity of such Grants being made was included in the £1,650,000 estimated by the Chancellor of the Exchequer on 23rd October, 1912, as the additional cost of medical benefit under the National Insurance Act?


Argyllshire is one of the districts within the terms of reference of the Highlands and Islands Committee, whose Report was presented on the 6th instant and is now under consideration.

Major HOPE

After that Report has been dealt with and acted upon, will the insured persons be provided with medical benefit or their contributions returned?


I think there is medical benefit provided for all the insured persons in Argyllshire.


Will the right hon. Gentleman say how it is possible in these scattered areas, with matters as they are now, to do that unless he has more doctors?


All the doctors in Argyllshire have taken service under the National Insurance Act and they have been promised a special mileage Grant in those scattered areas.


With regard to the question of mileage, has that been promised to the country doctors?


Yes, all the doctors have been promised that in sparsely populated areas there will be a special Grant.