HC Deb 14 February 1929 vol 225 cc518-9
3. Mr. LEE

asked the Minister of Pensions whether he will refer the case of S. Hedley, 246, Storforth Lane, Birdholme, to the pensions (entitlement) appeal tribunal; whether he is aware that Hedley enlisted in 1916 and was discharged in 1918 as physically unfit on account of dyspepsia, disablement pension being granted until November, 1923, when a medical board decided the aggravation by War service had passed away; that Hedley has been under medical treatment ever since for stomach troubles; that his complaint is now called dysentery, which would appear to be only another name for the same complaint; and that in 1927 and 1928 he underwent operations, but the stomach trouble is still remaining, and the local doctor believes the complaint to have been continuous?


I have no power to adopt the course suggested. Mr. Hedley was discharged, after two years and 10 months' service performed entirely at home, on account of dyspepsia, which was found to have been slightly aggravated by service. The decision referred to in the question was not made until five years after his discharge and only after a course of in-patient treatment and medical observation, and though informed, at the time, of his right of appeal against the award, Mr. Hedley failed to exercise it. His subsequent medical history has been carefully investigated in response co a request by the hon. Member but, as I have informed him, I am advised that the man's present condition cannot be connected with his War service.

5. Mr. JOHN

asked the Minister of Pensions whether he is aware that Mr. William Phillips, of 126, Tyntyla Road, Llwynypia, Rhondda, an ex-service man, was in May, 1916, invalided home from Egypt on account of valvular disease of heart; was discharged in August, 1917; on 20th August, 1917, and 6th May, 1918, was awarded 30 per cent. pension for cardiac disease and rheumatism; on 25th June, 1920, was awarded 20 per cent. for the same disability; on 14th June, 1921, was awarded 14 per cent. for disorderly action of the heart and rheumatism; that four independent doctors have recently certified that Mr. Phillips is suffering from organic disease of the heart attributable to War service; and will he now consider the advisability of reconsidering this case with a view of correcting the error in the final award?


I am aware of the facts of this case, about which I have been in correspondence with the hon. Member. The medical history of the case shows clearly that organic disease of the heart was not caused by War service, and I am advised that the compensation already granted, culminating in a final award, which was affirmed on the man's appeal to the Pensions Appeal Tribunal, is an adequate settlement for any disablement which can properly be ascribed to War service.


On a point of Order. May I ask you, Sir, in regard to these three questions, 2, 3 and 5, whether an understanding was not arrived at that questions relating to individual cases should, as far as possible, be dealt with by the Ministry and not brought before the House?


I should not like to lay down any Ruling on that point. It had better be left to the judgment of Members themselves.