HC Deb 05 May 1927 vol 205 cc1759-60

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he is aware of the prolonged correspondence between the Parish Council of Strath, Skye, and the Scottish Board of Health relative to a dispute over the continuance of the present medical officer for the parish in his appointment, and that the council has intimated its unanimous intention of resigning unless it is given freedom of action in terminating the present appointment and in securing possession of the house tenanted by the present medical officer for the parish; and what steps, if any, he proposes to take in the matter?


I am aware of the present circumstances of the medical service in the parish of Strath and have myself been in correspondence with the parish council in the matter. By Section 3 (5) of the Highlands and Islands (Medical Service) Grant Act, 1913, the parish medical officer cannot be dismissed from his post without the consent of the Scottish Board of Health. In pursuance of their duty under that Section the Board ordered an inquiry into the medical service in this parish and appointed a senior member of the Scottish Bar as Special Commissioner for that purpose. The Commissioner found that certain professional charges brought against the parish medical officer had not been substantiated and ought never to have been made, and also that there was no other ground on which his dismissal from the parish appointment would be justified. After consideration of the Commissioner's Report the Board decided that this was a case which clearly called for the protection afforded to parish medical officers in the Highland and Islands by the Section referred to, and I entirely concur in that decision.