HC Deb 09 March 1916 vol 80 cc1700-2

asked the Under-Secretary of State for War whether Major D. Paton, Headquarters No. 8 District, Exeter, gave instructions to the recruiting officers under him to agree to pay to doctors undertaking the examination of recruits in November and December last 2s. 6d. per examination; that such recruiting officers thereupon verbally and in two cases in writing agreed with large numbers of doctors to pay them this fee, and on the strength of the undertaking secured the services of these doctors; that thereafter, when the examination of recruits had been made, the same recruiting officers were instructed by Major Paton to write to the doctors informing them that in promising the payment of 2s. 6d. per recruit they had exceeded their duty and the agreed payment would therefore not be made, and offering payment on a lower scale; and whether he proposes to take any action in the matter?


I regret that my inquiries into this matter are not yet complete. When they are I will communicate with my hon. Friend.

115. Mr. SNOWDEN

asked the Under-Secretary of State for War if Army medical examiners of recruits are paid a fee only on cases which are passed; and if this can be accepted as the explanation of the fact that recently men have been passed as fit for military service who have an artificial leg, men who are so mentally deficient that they are unable to understand or answer any question put to them by the recruiting officer, and men who have never done any work for years on account of daily attacks of epilepsy, or what other reason there may be for passing such persons into the Army?

130. Sir F. CAWLEY

asked the Under-Secretary of State for War whether recruiting medical officers are paid only for recruits whom they pass as sound; and whether officers of the Royal Army Medical Corps receive special payment for each recruit passed?


I will answer at the same time Question No. 130. I am grateful to my hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn and also to the hon. Baronet for giving me the opportunity for contradicting categorically the statement that recruiting medical officers are paid only for recruits whom they pass as sound. It is the examination which is paid for, and the pecuniary result to the examining medical officer is the same whether he accepts or rejects a recruit. I have stated this upon several occasions. I should add that a medical man holding a commission receives no fees for the examination of recruits. I cannot accept the latter part of the question of my hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn as being anything else than an incorrect representation of the results of the work of the examining medical officers. I think that instead of being held up to obloquy they deserve support and recognition in the heavy work they are patriotically doing on behalf of the country.


As the right hon. Gentleman casts reflections on the accuracy of the statement I made, if he disputes the facts will he allow me to give him actual cases bearing out every statement I have made?



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