HC Deb 01 February 1951 vol 483 cc1054-5
20. Mr. Storey

asked the Minister of Health if he has now received the report of the regional hospital board upon the circumstances preceding the death of Charles Walker who was found dying outside a lonely hut in Urmston meadows to which he had been returned after being refused admission to Park Hospital, Davyhulme, because he was not sufficiently ill, and to a welfare hostel at An-coats because he was too ill; and the steps taken by his Department to secure a more realistic liaison between the National Health Service and those responsible for the administration of National Assistance and the Vagrancy Acts.

Mr. Marquand

Inquiries are not yet complete, but a preliminary report suggests that the failure was not one of liaison between services but of judgment on the part of certain officers. I will make a statement when I have a full report.

Mr. Storey

Why has it taken so long to get the report? The West Manchester Hospital Committee held an inquiry on 30th December and issued a report to the public. Why does the right hon. Gentleman's Department take so long to get down to this very serious matter?

Mr. Marquand

Because the question of possible failure of diagnosis obviously needs to be considered very carefully.