HC Deb 30 November 1939 vol 355 cc232-3
17. Mr. Rhys Davies

asked the Minister of Health why he decided upon schemes of additional benefits in the case of certain approved societies whose valuations took place on 31st December, 1937, without giving the committees of management of valuation units the right to submit their own schemes to the Ministry for sanction in accordance with usual practice; whether he is aware that his decision is contrary to the practice which still holds good in the Department of Health for Scotland; and whether his action is to be extended and on what statutory authority it is based?

Mr. Elliot

Some modification of the normal proceedure for dealing with approved societies' schemes of additional benefits has been made in the present exceptional circumstances with the object of saving work on the parts of societies themselves and of the seriously depleted staffs of my Department and of the Government Actuary. Under the new procedure a suitable scheme of benefits, as far as possible identical with that at present in force, is recommended to the society for adoption, but if in any particular case a society desires to submit alternative proposals, consideration is always given to any representations which they may make. This procedure does not differ in any material respect from that adopted by the Department of Health for Scotland.

Mr. Davies

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that there is a difference already between the treatment of one society in particular in Scotland and in England, and will he look at the cases I have given him?

Mr. Elliot

Yes, Sir, certainly.

18. Mr. Leonard

asked the Minister of Health whether he has considered the proposal sent to him by the Medical Practitioners' Union suggesting that medical benefit under the National Health Insurance Acts be extended, on a non-contributory basis, to the dependants of men serving in the armed Forces; and with what result?

Mr. Elliot

I have considered the proposal to which the hon. Member refers and have sent a reply similar to that which I gave on 23rd November to a question on the same subject by the hon. and learned Member for Greenock (Mr. R. Gibson).