§ Considered in Committee.
§ [Sir E. CORNWALL in the Chair.]
Motion made, and Question proposed,
That, for the purpose of any Act of the present Session to amend the Acts relating to National Health Insurance, it is expedient to authorise the payment out of moneys to be provided by Parliament of the additional expenses incurred by any Government department:—
§ The MINISTER of HEALTH (Dr. Addison)
This matter has been before the House on two occasions, and the White Paper which has been circulated fully sets out all the matters mentioned in the Resolution and the financial considera- 379 tions involved. The Treasury contribution of two-ninths represents an expenditure of £1,772,000. The other items are small, the largest being C, which, I think, will be generally welcomed. The men of the Army and Navy and other Forces have had 1½d. per week deducted from their pay as their share of the contribution. It is proposed now that that shall be made good by the Exchequer and shall not be deducted from their pay. That represents an additional charge of about £290,000 a year. Then there is a small item which is estimated to cost £1,000 in respect of the penny grant towards low-wage earners. I am glad to say that the number of persons who come within that category is diminishing.
I should like to point out that this Resolution commits us to the principle of differentiation between men and women as regards benefits. While we shall not oppose the passing of this Resolution, we shall probably ask for it to be recommitted in order that men and women can have equal benefits under the Bill.
§ Resolution to be reported To-morrow.
§ The remaining Orders were read and postponed.