HC Deb 23 January 1951 vol 483 cc20-1
37. Mr. Henderson Stewart

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he can now report on arrangements made for securing places in Swiss sanatoria for Scottish tuberculosis patients.

The Joint Under-Secretary of State for Scotland (Miss Herbison)

My right hon. Friend is satisfied, after a visit of inquiry by clinical experts, that a number of beds are available in Swiss sanatoria which afford an acceptable standard of medical care and are otherwise suitable. Legislation would ultimately be necessary, and the financial implications are now being considered in consultation with my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Mr. Stewart

Can the hon. Lady tell the House roughly how many beds she fancies will be occupied by Scottish people as a result of this proposal?

Miss Herbison

From an examination by these experts, we understand about 300 beds.

Lieut.-Colonel Elliot

In that case would it not be possible for the hon. Lady to expedite the arrangements being made? Even if legislation had to be arranged, there would be general agreement on all sides of the House that no delay should be allowed in making more beds available for Scottish tuberculosis cases.

Miss Herbison

I can assure all hon. Members that this matter is being hurried as quickly as possible, and that it is being given very quick consideration by the Chancellor at the present time.

Miss Irene Ward

Is the same argument going to apply to English as well as to Scottish patients?

Miss Herbison

That is a question for the English Minister.

Mr. Speaker

This is a Question about Scotland, and we cannot now deal with England, too.

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