HC Deb 11 May 1950 vol 475 cc565-6
76. Sir Austin Hudson

asked the Minister of Health whether he is aware of the disparity of charges made by doctors for cremation certificates; and if he will consider whether such certificates could now be issued free or for some small uniform charge under the National Health Service.

Mr. Bevan

I have no power to fix fees for these certificates which, in the view of the Safford Committee, do not fall into the category which doctors are required to issue free of charge under the National Health Service Act.

Sir A. Hudson

Has the Minister no power to deal with hospitals under the National Health Scheme, because there are three in Lewisham, one of which charges three guineas, another two guineas, and another no fee at all, which seems rather ridiculous in the case of National Health hospitals?

Mr. Bevan

I do not think that the hon. Member will find it is the hospital which charges the fee. It must be the doctor who gives this certificate, and I have answered that point in my reply.