HC Deb 31 July 1947 vol 441 cc623-4
34. Mr. Gallacher

asked the Minister of Health whether he will consider raising the allowance of 27s. a week for single men under treatment for tuberculosis; and whether he is aware that this low scale prevents many factory workers from accepting treatment and defeats the aims of the scheme of mass radiography now working in various parts of the country.

Mr. Bevan

As the present allowances schemes will be replaced by other arrangements when the new social legislation is completed by the proposed National Assistance Bill, it would be inappropriate to revise it at this stage. I know of nothing to support the generalisation in the last part of the Question.

Mr. Gallacher

Is the Minister aware that when this scheme was introduced it gave very great hope to many sufferers from tuberculosis, and many of those who were employed found it difficult to give up their employment to undergo the treatment, because of the low rate of allowance?

Mr. Bevan

I have said that there is no evidence in my possession to support the last part of my hon. Friend's statement. The scheme has done very great service indeed in the prevention of the development of tuberculosis, and next Session—if I am not anticipating too much—when the National Assistance Bill will be introduced, it will be assimilated into the wider scheme.