HC Deb 13 March 1945 vol 409 c16
35. Mrs. Hardie

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether his attention has been drawn to the alarming increase in dysentery in Scotland; and if he can make any statement on the subject.

The Joint Under-Secretary of State for Scotland (Mr. Westwood)

I am aware that there has been a sharp increase during the war in the number of persons notified as suffering from dysentery in Scotland, although the number of certified deaths is stationary since 1941. Most cases are of a mild form and involve only a few days' incapacity. The increase began long before the war, and may be partly due to improved methods of diagnosis. During 1944, there is no recorded instance of spread of the disease among the civilian population by food, milk or water, although the possibility cannot be ruled out.

Mrs. Hardie

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that this disease is caused mainly by food poisoning; and is he quite sure that there is sufficient inspection of food supplies in Scotland?

Mr. Westwood

I can assure the hon. Lady that the medical officers of the Department of Health for Scotland are in close touch with the public health authorities, and that we are watching the position very closely.

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