69 and 80. Miss Ward
asked the Minister of Health (1) whether adequate material for the provision of supplies and equipment for civil hospitals has been issued to the hospital supply depots;
(2) whether the hospital supply depots have been in a position to function adequately, as laid down in the regulations governing the setting up of women's voluntary service organisations?
§ Mr. Elliot
Hospital supply dep6ts are voluntary organisations, and no official regulations have been made for them. The depots obtain their supplies for the making up of hospital comforts and accessories through funds raised by local appeal, by arrangements with the local hospitals, and from the Central Hospital Supply Service. I understand that on the outbreak of the war the dep6ts found difficulty in obtaining supplies, but that the situation has now improved, and I am doing what I can, through the Central Hospital Supply Service, to assist.
In view of the complaints with regard to supplies to hospitals, could the right hon. Gentleman say what was the reason for the hold-up, because the whole of the country was extremely annoyed about it?
§ Mr. Elliot
There are many cases where, owing to the war, it has been impossible to obtain materials for the services as quickly as we should have been able to obtain them in peace time.