§ Mr. Crookshank
I beg to move, in page 2, line 8, to leave out "or."
I do not know if it would be for the convenience of the Committee to take 778 this Amendment and the one in my name to line 10.
Although there is another Amendment in between, I think we can discuss them together.
§ Mr. Crookshank
The first Amendment is really drafting. It omits the word "or" so that the Clause will read when the second Amendment is inserted (a), (b), (c) and (d). The main object of the second Amendment is to exclude from any charge the clinical examination which a patient may have and the report on it.
It struck me, as I further studied this matter and heard the different views on the subject, that it really was a reasonable proposition to say that, as we are trying to do our best for the general health of the nation in all this, it was wiser, if a charge had to be imposed, which is the object of this Clause, that the examination, at any rate, which might lead to work being done, should be free. It would encourage people to see their dentists and have the examination, quite possibly, more frequently than if they had to pay for it.
The mere fact that a person does go regularly to see a dentist, knowing he will not be charged for the examination, might prompt him to go more frequently, and the experience which we have personally, not being dentists, is that the oftener one goes, the less likely is it in the long run that any remedial action will be necessary.
I announced this change as the decision of the Government when I made my speech in the Second Reading debate, and I hope it will be acceptable to the Committee.
§ Amendment agreed to.
§ Mr. Iain MacLeod
I beg to move, in page 2, line 9, to leave out from "bleeding," to the end of line 10.
Whatever its merits as an Amendment, I think we can all agree that this Amendment has a panache about it. In fact, it so excited one of my hon. Friends that he has composed a "Ballade of Parliamentary Draftsmen," of which the "punch line" at the end of each stanza is:Leave out from 'bleeding' to end of line 10.The point here is a small but a very real one, and as we have a practicing 779 dentist in the House, perhaps he will give his views upon it. It has been put to me by a number of dentists that bleeding, in this sort of case, is not always caused only by the extraction of teeth, and, as we are seeking to give an exemption in this part of Clause 2, obviously, the more we narrow the exemption by definition, the worse perhaps it is for some of the patients.
I therefore suggest that we should take out the narrowing and limiting words:caused by the extraction of teethand simply leave the exemption to cover the cases, rare though they be, which, I am assured by the dentists and others, are not due to the extraction of teeth.
§ Mr. John Baird (Wolverhampton, North-East)
I agree with what the hon. Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain MacLeod) has said, and I am very glad that he has paid attention to the dentists who have been advising him on this matter. I think it is a great pity that he did not pay attention to them on the subject of this charge, which, as every dentist knows, will ruin the teeth of the people of this country.
§ Mr. Crookshank
My hon. Friend who moved this Amendment has been very persuasive and, as he is supported by the technical experience of the hon. Gentleman opposite, who am I, as a layman, to say "No"? I am very happy to accept the Amendment.
§ Amendment agreed to.
Further Amendment made: In page 2, line 10, at the end, to insert:
(d) the clinical examination of a patient and any report thereon."—[Mr. Crookshank.}
§ Mr. Marquand
I beg to move, in page 2, line 10, at the end, to insert:(d) a service for which the current authorised fee is not more than one pound.This is the first opportunity we have had to discuss Clause 2 at all, and here we are making remarkably rapid progress. I hope that we shall continue in this way. When the right hon. Gentleman said just now that he was glad to listen to the expert professional advice of my hon. Friend the Member for Wolverhampton, North-East (Mr. Baird), and asked who was he, as a layman, to contradict advice of that kind, I was 780 hoping that he would take the same attitude about the Amendment which I am now moving.
I am still in doubt about the origins of the proposal for the charge for dental treatment. It really did come to us as a great shock, and we heard the announcement with considerable astonishment. How it ever came about that anyone advised the right hon. Gentleman to make a charge for dental treatment, in view of the vast amount of advice which already existed on this point, from some of which I quoted when I spoke on Second Reading, we really could not imagine.
One thing is certain amid the obscurity, and that is that the dental profession itself objected very strongly and strenuously indeed to the proposal. Particularly did they object to charges for dental treatment, as we on this side of the Committee object to them, being made by the method selected; namely, the charge for the first £1 worth of treatment which was necessary, or the amount, less than £1, which might be necessary, saying, in effect to the patient, "If your teeth have been neglected for sufficiently long, and you have acquired more than £1 worth of damage, you need not pay for the additional damage, but, if your teeth are in such a state that they need less than that amount of attention, we will charge you."
The dental profession made representations to the right hon. Gentleman. Indeed, they made representations to every hon. Member of this House, so upset, surprised and consternated were they by this proposal. One must in fairness admit that the right hon. Gentleman has paid some attention to some of these representations. He himself agreed to exempt from the charge at first persons under 16, and later on, in response to further representations, under 21, so that they will not have to pay for the first £1 worth of dental treatment. That showed that the right hon. Gentleman was responsive more and more to suggestions. This afternoon he has been responsive to still further suggestions in this direction.
I should like to know whether the dental profession, having received from the right hon. Gentleman this concession for which they had asked, having secured from him the undertaking to raise the age of exemption to 21, are now satisfied. Have they made further representations to 781 the right hon. Gentleman? Have they indicated to him in any way whether they approve of this charge? I shall be very surprised indeed if they have.
Have they not asked him if he will go further—because the opinion which we on this side of the Committee have received from the professional associations and those who are expert in this field is that, if a charge is to be made at all, it should be made in such a way as to give an incentive for the care of the teeth and to encourage people to seek treatment. An examination which will not be charged for is, of course, some incentive, but the adoption of the proposal which I am putting forward would be a far greater incentive indeed.
The dental health of this country is still very far from satisfactory. We have had before us many times the evidence collected by the Teviot Committee in 1944. That is only eight years ago. No doubt there has been some improvement since then—indeed I am sure there has been since a universal free service was provided from 1948 onwards. But we cannot be satisfied with the state of the dental health of our people. We know very well that there are not enough dentists to meet the needs of everybody requiring dental treatment.
I think that to adopt the proposal which I made this afternoon would be one way of ensuring that scarce dental skill is used at those times and places when it can give most benefit to the nation as a whole by improving the dental health of the people, which is so important to their general health. We must make improvements, even in bad things, if we can. We should devise a charge which would encourage people to undertake early treatment as quickly as possible.
If the dentist advises people that there is some small matter which needs immediate attention and from which they will benefit, let him not have to say that it will cost them 12s. 6d. or 15s. but rather that if they let him do it at once it will never cost them anything at all. The right hon. Gentleman has provided a concession this afternoon. Let him take full advantage of it and go a step forward and encourage people, especially young people, to come forward for treatment.
I know that he has raised the age of exemption to 21, but there are large 782 numbers of young people above that age who are still earning comparatively small incomes, who are still, shall we say, in a comparatively irresponsible stage of their development, and who do not attach the same importance as older people to the care of their teeth. Let the Minister, therefore, take full advantage of the concession he has made, improve upon it, and make his device as complete as he can in the circumstances in which he finds himself.
§ Mr. Baird
I rise to support this Amendment standing in the name of my right hon. Friend and myself because I believe it gets right to the basis of the dental charges. The first argument put forward in favour of these charges was that they would help to stop some of the many abuses. With regard to the dental aspect of the Bill, there can be no basis for that argument because nobody goes to a dentist to have a tooth extracted or filled unless it is necessary.
I believe that one of the major reasons for imposing charges on dental treatment is because a large number of hon. Members on both sides of the Committee have the idea that the dental service is simply one of the frills of the National Health Service, and is not as essential as some others. But I submit to the right hon. Gentleman and to the Parliamentary Secretary that the dental service is an integral and important part of the National Health Service and that, if it is undermined to any great extent, the effect will be to undermine the health of the people.
A septic tooth can cause many diseases. Daily, doctors are sending many cases of all kinds to practising dentists who quite often find on examination that the cause of the infection is in the mouth. Therefore, if the teeth of the people deteriorate as a result of these charges, there is a danger that their health will also deteriorate.
Those of us who come from industrial areas, as many on this side of the Committee do, know what happened in those areas in the bad old days. We in the dental profession have been fighting against it for generations. We had a two-tier system of treatment, one for middle-class patients, who could afford to pay for conservative treatment, and another for the great mass of people who, because they could not afford to pay for 783 such treatment, only came to us for extractions and artificial teeth. Dentists in those areas flourished by manufacturing dentures.
My right hon. Friend the Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Bevan), when Minister of Health, deliberately tried to force down the price paid to dentists for dentures and to force up the price of conservative dentistry in order to save teeth rather than manufacture dentures. He was proved right, and the dental health of this country has been improving during the last three years at a tremendous rate. But the imposition of this charge is going to put the Service back to where it was before 1948. I will read the Committee a quotation from the "British Dental Journal" of 4th March, and nobody could say that that was a Labour publication. The following is what they say is going to happen as a result of these charges:A reasonable expectation would he that the demand rate will settle down at a figure more nearly approximate to that which obtained under the old dispensation of dental benefit under the National Health Insurance Acts.The dentists anticipate that, owing to these charges, based on last year, we shall get back to the dentistry we had before the National Health Service was introduced.
As a dental surgeon, I have been very unpopular with my professional brothers on many occasions because I have told them in this House when I thought they had been unethical. I see that the gallant and sanctimonious right hon. Member for Kelvingrove (Lieut.-Colonel Elliot) is in the Chamber. I remember during a debate on the National Health Service, when I protested on behalf of some of my constituents who were being misused by certain members of the dental profession in my area at the time—they could not receive attention without paying for it—the right hon. and gallant Gentleman accused me of making a foul speech and of fouling my own nest because I attacked certain members of my profession. It is well known that hon. Members on both sides received numerous letters at the beginning of the Service complaining that dentists were refusing to give emergency treatment under the scheme, and I was proved right.
§ Mr. Baird
As a result of my protests in this House and the leaders of the dental profession being able to bring their influence to bear on the unethical members of the dental profession, that practice was stopped, and today we have a service which is running very well indeed. But if this charge, which is chiefly a charge for emergency treatment, is imposed, we shall go back to what happened in the early days of the service. Emergency treatment of all kinds will he carried out outside the scheme and the person requiring such treatment will have to pay for it, perhaps at a time when he can least afford to do so. I know that in such circumstances many of my professional brothers would give the treatment without charge, but that is not the way to approach the problem. This service is not a charity; it is a right.
There is one other small technical point to which I hope the Minister will try to reply. He has not attempted to reply to any of my technical points up to now. Since the scheme came into being, we dentists have tried to save teeth rather than take them out. Every day patients come to us wanting extractions. I find that if one puts in a dressing one may be able to bring that patient back in a week or so for a filling. When we carry out this treatment that is a temporary dressing, we get a fee of 7s. 6d.
But if this scheme is carried through, the patient will have to pay the 7s. 6d., or whatever the dentist charges. The patient will pay 7s. 6d. for the dressing and then the dentist's fee for filling when he comes back for treatment in a week's time. Therefore, there will be two fees for the same treatment. The patient who has not been educated to the conservation of teeth will tend to say, "No, let me have the tooth out and be done with it."
I am grateful to the Minister for the compliment when, referring to the Amendment moved by the hon. Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Jain MacLeod), he asked, "Who am I to disagree with hon. Members who are experienced in the profession?" I really hope the right hon. Gentleman will listen to me again, as I am speaking professionally here. Who advised the right hon. Gentleman on this method of paying these charges? 785 Quite frankly, I am against all charges in the dental service; but if charges are to be imposed, surely the profession should have been consulted before they were fixed. I know there were consultations afterwards. But were the British Dental Association consulted before the method of imposing the charges was introduced? Does the hon. Member for Enfield, West agree that that is the best method of raising the money? I will sit down if he will tell us.
§ Mr. Iain MacLeod
The hon. Member's method of conducting debates is tediously familiar. I have not the slightest intention of intervening to suit his convenience.
§ Mr. Baird
This is the silliest method of imposing a charge because it will be a charge on the sensible patient who comes regularly to his dentist. The "British Dental Journal" for 15th April states:The method of requiring patients to pay up to the first £1 on each estimate for treatment is still, however, open to the objection that it will operate unfairly to the disadvantage of those who attend regularly for treatment. They will, inevitably, be called upon to pay for the greater part of their treatment, whereas those who only make occasional visits to the dentist will he called upon to meet only a small proportion of the cost. This is bound, in the long run, to act as a deterrent to regular treatment—the one thing which should be the aim of a well-conceived health service to encourage.Again—and on this I have put down an Amendment which I am afraid will not be called—the "British Dental Journal" makes a suggestion to the Minister. It goes on to state:A percentage charge on all estimates would not be open to this objection. Under such a system, a patient who had one small filling done on each of four half-yearly visits would be called upon to pay the same charge as a patient who had four larger fillings done during one course of treatment at the end of two years, whereas under the proposals in the Bill, the first patient would pay the whole cost of his treatment and the second would only have to pay £1.Why is it that the Minister has paid no attention to his professional advisers? It is only because this Bill was ill-conceived and hurriedly introduced for petty political motives and not to bring any 786 advantage to the National Health Service. The hon. Member for Enfield, West, who made a very feeble return in his speech yesterday, took the line that these charges are ethically and socially justified because they will bring a better balance to the Health Service and will have a restraining influence on the scheme.
They are having a restraining influence all right. The Act introduced last year is already having a tremendous effect. The demand for dentures has dried up and there are hundreds of dental mechanics unemployed and a large number of dentists not fully employed. Does the hon. Member want that? If these new charges are imposed, it will mean there will be less and less demand for fillings and conservative treatment. If these things were being abused then let us by all means impose these charges. But are they? The demand for dentures has dried up, and the British Dental Association is worried because now there will be less demand for conservation treatment. As I said before, we are imposing a two-tier system—one type of dentistry for the wealthier classes and another for the poorer. We are putting the clock back to earlier days.
I believe there is a Dentists Bill ready for discussion, which has passed through all stages in another place, if the Leader of the House can find time for it. Its aim is to deal with the alleged shortage of dentists. I entirely disagree with the view that there is a shortage of dentists today. Let us not think that these proposed charges are a minor matter. I knew from my own practical experience that patients coming in week after week, and month after month, have really appreciated this free dental service. I speak with all sincerity as one who spends more time on his practice than in this House—though perhaps I ought not to do that.
I have heard the hon. Member for Enfield, West, and the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, South-West (Mr. Powell), suggest that these charges are socially justified. If they said those things in their own constituencies, they would be hounded out of the town. If these charges are imposed, we shall go back to a type of dental treatment and service that we had before the great National Health Service was introduced.
§ Mr. Iain MacLeod
The reason I would recommend my right hon. Friend the Minister on this occasion not to take the advice of the practising dentist to whom we have just listened is that I believe that, from beginning to end of what he said, the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, North-East (Mr. Baird), was entirely wrong.
On the Second Reading of this Bill, I put two propositions to the House, both of which have been referred to at inordinate length not only by the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, North-East, but by other hon. Members opposite. I said that, as far as the gleaning together of a small amount of information went—and there was no official information at the time—the charges had a serious deterrent effect. I said, secondly, "I believe you can justify this sort of charges if the result of a drop in the demand for dentures is an increase in the dental school service, and only if that happens."
The hon. Member for Wolverhampton, North-East, as he always does, went off like a soda fountain about that and he has been bubbling about it ever since. He appears to be unaware that a large number of people in his profession do not agree with him, and I am alarmed at what will happen on the day when he realises that it is not the rest of the battalion but little Willie who is not in step.
§ Mr. MacLeod
If I were talking about the facts of the case, I could not conceivably be talking about the hon. Member's views. I give him that straight away. At the time when I put these views to the House, there were shouts of "Nonsense" from the hon. Member. He repeated that there is no considerable drift back. Three days after I made that speech the Department of Health for Scotland issued a report for 1951, which I have here. I will not go into all the details, but it confirms that the figures that I gave from estimates only, and from such information as a private Member can gather, were completely accurate and that there had been such a drop in the provision of dentures that there had been a considerable deterrent effect. Two figures are 788 most impressive. In January, 1951, 61.1 per cent. of the total payments to dentists represented fees for dentures. The corresponding amount in December, 1951, represented only 32.2 per cent. On that issue we are agreed. There has been a deterrent effect.
Now let us come to the second point. What improvement has there been in the school dental service? Perhaps I may read this paragraph to the hon. Member.
§ Mr. MacLeod
Yes, and these figures will also be confirmed in the English Report when it comes out. I spoke to the Secretary of the British Dental Association on this matter only the day before yesterday. The paragraph states:One important consequence of the drop in applications for dentures along with the negotiations for improved salary scales in local authority employment was an increase in the number of dentists in the school dental service. By the end of the year, taking account of dentists with engagements to start work early in 1952, half the ground lost by the school service after the introduction of the National Health Service in 1948 had been recovered. There was every reason to expect that this trend would continue.How dare the hon. Member come to the House and make that sort of suggestion? He must have seen that statement that half the ground lost by the miserable tactics of his Government had been recovered—tactics which, far from helping the dental health of the people, helped the non-priority classes and rotted the children's teeth. If we on this side of the House are to be accused in that phrase by the right hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Bevan), I throw it straight back at him. I do not see how the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, North-East, dares, as a professional man, to come to the House and say that there is no considerable evidence, because the evidence which I hold in my hand is the official evidence of the Ministry. It consists no longer of the estimates of a back bench Member, as it did on Second Reading.
§ Mr. Baird
There are two points that I should like to raise. First of all, to say that the dental health of school children is now lower than it was is completely unfounded, and no responsible dental body would suggest it. Had I known that the hon. Gentleman was going to 789 deal with the school dental service on this Amendment, I would have referred to it myself earlier. We have never had an efficient school dental service, and I say that there is no possibility that by these charges we shall get a flow into the school dental service so as to provide an efficient service.
§ Mr. MacLeod
It is happening now, and the Secretary of the British Dental Association told me so less than 48 hours ago.
§ Mr. MacLeod
I cannot give way to the hon. Member. I am dealing entirely with the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, North-East; it is more courteous to concentrate on him. In my view, the evidence is abundant, and I say that if the only result of a deterrent charge was that dentists and dental mechanics were unemployed, I would loathe that charge. I do not like charges for the fun of it. I like charges either because they are economically essential or because I believe—I freely grant that one can be wrong on this—it is possible to get a list of priorities. If that be so, then these charges are going to be justified if the health of the children is better looked after.
As any parents can tell the hon. Member—and I myself have young children—it is quite true that it is becoming increasingly possible to get appointments for the dental treatment of one's children either in emergency or for conservative treatment, which is more closely concerned with this Amendment. The reason for that is that less dentures are being made and dentists have more time. These things stem from the charges introduced a year ago. I do not say that this is the best method of introducing them—I do not know what negotiations there have been—but on those grounds, and on the principle that a dental charge in itself is not abhorent, I stand absolutely firm.
I do not want a deterrent charge so that dentists become unemployed; heaven forbid. I am deeply concerned with the dental profession, as I think the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, North-East, will agree, although we differ widely on so many other matters. Only in education is it more silly to be dogmatic than 790 in matters of health. It is wrong to say flatly that such and such a thing must happen. All I say is that the evidence so far shows the truth of the views which I have consistently put to the House, for if I have ever been single-minded about anything I have been single-minded about these charges, and I have stated my views all over the country. I retreat from nothing.
I genuinely believe that, quite apart from the economic outlook, there is nothing whatever between the point of view of the Minister of Health and myself or between the front and back benchers on this side of the Committee on this issue at all. Because one speaker emphasises the economic aspect of the problem and another the social aspect, it does not mean that they fail to recognise the strength of the other's point of view. I believe that these charges will find their justification in time. If they do not, I shall be the first to say that as soon as possible they should be reduced or withdrawn. I say that seriously.
I ask my right hon. Friend the Minister of Health not to take too much account of the views of our only dentist in this matter, because, as the Department of Health for Scotland have proved, and as the Ministry of Health for England and Wales will prove in due course, he just simply does not know the real implications of what he is saying.
§ Mr. MacLeod
I am prepared to answer the question, though goodness knows why the hon. Member should ask me this sort of question. Probably the figure which has been given in the House on many occasions, of between 2,000 and 3,000, is correct.
§ Mr. MacLeod
For England, Wales and Scotland—provided that dentists themselves in the public service also have 791 time to give of their skill. One does not know the precise figure because we simply do not know to what extent the lag in conservative treatment has left a backlog of ill-health. I suspect that it is very considerable indeed. I do not believe that a flat answer can be given.
§ Dr. Edith Summerskill (Fulham, West)
May I ask one or two questions? I was not very impressed by the last two or three sentences that the hon. Gentleman uttered. He said that if it is proved that he is wrong—by that I suppose he means if it is proved in the next year or two—that people's teeth are deteriorating and that, therefore, the Government have made a great mistake, he will be prepared to withdraw all that he has said today.
The hon. Member has set himself up in this Chamber—and perhaps there is some justification for it—as an authority on social reform. Is it not a curious attitude to take in respect of dental caries, to say that, if the teeth of the people deteriorate, he is prepared to admit to us that he was wrong? Surely he is not going to pursue that argument and wait for the teeth of the people to deteriorate? It might be a valid argument if he were discussing something not quite so serious, but I hope that he will explain to the Committee that he did not mean exactly what his words conveyed, certainly to those Members on this side of the Committee.
§ Mr. MacLeod
With great respect to the right hon. Lady, she is on a false point. She would be on an accurate point if everything in the garden were lovely at the moment, but she knows very well that the numbers in the school dental service deteriorated enormously under her administration.
§ Dr. Summerskill
I am not asking the hon. Gentleman only about the school dental service. I am also thinking of the teeth of the young men and women who are over 21—between 21 and 25—whose teeth are very vulnerable. I am thinking of men and women in the lowest income groups. The hon. Gentleman is prepared to tell the Committee that he is ready to wait to see if their teeth deteriorate under this scheme and, if they do, he will then be prepared to withdraw his argument.
§ Miss Margaret Herbison (Lanarkshire, North)
I wish to support this Amendment, but before dealing with it precisely there is one question which I should like to have answered. It is a question that has been exercising the minds of all Scottish Members on this side of the Committee, particularly since Question time on Tuesday. Then, in answer to a supplementary question from my hon. Friend the Member for Fife, West (Mr. Hamilton), the Secretary of State for Scotland said:That is rather a different point and perhaps is for those in charge of the National Health Bill."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 22nd April, 1952; Vol. 499, c. 204.]That answer surprised us very much indeed, since the same right hon. Gentleman's name is attached to this Bill.
But since he has made that statement and since the Second Reading, during the whole of the long Committee stage of this Bill, not one of the five Scottish Ministers who have a right to sit in this Chamber has said anything at all about these Amendments. Our Scottish Members are wondering whether the Government have decided to accept at least one major Amendment, that standing in the names of six of my hon. Friends—in Clause 4, page 3, line 29, to leave out subsection (3). I hope that whoever replies will give me a specific answer to that question, because we did feel that when two extra Ministers were added to the Scottish Office they would at least let Scotland's voice be heard more often from the Government Front Bench. What we are discovering is that on United Kingdom matters, in spite of the extra Ministers at the Scottish Office, Scotland's voice is being heard less and less.
I want to come to some of the points made by the hon. Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain MacLeod). It did not seem to me that he was speaking to this Amendment at all. The whole of his speech seemed to be bent towards proving that what he had said in the past was absolutely correct, because his main argument was that, by opposing this Amendment, we were providing a deterrent to the misuse of dentists. What does he mean by a deterrent? The Amendment which we have moved is asking that any conservative work that costs £1 or less ought to be free. Does he want to deter conservative work? If he does not want to do that, the whole of his speech goes for nothing.
793 When we had our National Health Service Act on the Statute Book, I felt that one of the finest provisions of that Act was free dental treatment, particularly in relation to conservative treatment. In this matter of the conservation of teeth, there was a really class division inside this country, because it was just impossible for the parents of many people from working-class homes to find the wherewithal to pay for conservative treatment for them and the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, North-East (Mr. Baird), was perfectly correct when he said that in our big industrial areas, at a very young age, our men and women had dentures and not one single tooth of their own in their heads.
It is for those reasons that I, who come from an industrial area, feel that this Bill is going to have very serious repercussions not only on the care of teeth but because, although children or young people under 21 are still going to have it free, at the present time we have a National Service Act under which the young people, either at 18 or at 20 years of age, must go into the Services for two years. These may be young people who are apprentices or who are at universities. It means that all these young men are going to be much older than 21 before they have any chance whatever of earning what will keep them in a reasonable way of life.
These are the young people who, until the age of 21, because of our National Health Service Act, will have learned to go to the dentist regularly and will have taken a pride in the care of their teeth. When they become 21 years of age, still students or apprentices and still earning very little or nothing at all, this vicious Act—because I can describe it in no other terms—is going to make it impossible for them to get the conservative treatment that all reasonably-minded people would wish them to have.
If it were for that reason alone—to take care of these young National Service men—then I would plead with the Minister that this might be one Amendment that he could very easily accept. It is not only that we are afraid of what will happen to the teeth of these young persons; it is not only dental disease of which we are afraid; but many diseases diagnosed by doctors can be traced to the lack of care of teeth in earlier years, so 794 that by this miserable saving in this part of the Bill we are piling up great expenditure to be borne not only by the men or women but by the national Exchequer.
This is a vicious Clause and I would say, for the reasons I have adduced, that it is also a very stupid Clause. I should like to suggest to whoever is to reply that he should give serious consideration to the points made by hon. Members on this side of the Committee. We are making no cheap party points on this Amendment. We are doing our level best to ensure, first of all, that conservative treatment will be continued for young people when they are over 21 years of age, and that the general health of our people will be preserved.
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
With the concluding sentences of the remarks of the hon. Lady the Member for Lanarkshire, North (Miss Herbison) I am sure we should all agree: that we are not trying to arrive at a party decision over this matter. We are trying to hammer out the solution of what is, admittedly, a very difficult problem. It is the problem of how to make an insufficient supply of dentists—of skilled men—go round where it will be most effective.
The White Paper of the Coalition Government said that there were not enough skilled people to introduce a comprehensive Health Service. It was decided, rightly or wrongly, to introduce a comprehensive Health Service, and great difficulties flowed from that and great tensions, one of the tensions being the falling off of the conservative treatment, especially of the young people, to which the hon. Lady has just referred. We are trying to deal with that in the Clause.
I fully sympathise with the point made by my hon. Friend the Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain MacLeod), that if these charges did not have the redistributive effect to which we all look, they would have failed greatly in their object; and I myself would be opposed to them. I can say that with a certain amount of past record, for, after all, the foundation of the whole of this conservative treatment is the health of the schoolchildren's teeth. On that I think every practising nutritionist would say that the ration of milk to the schoolchildren is the foundation stone upon which the whole thing is built. I do not need merely to appeal to opinions here. We have the two 795 Mellanby Reports, which showed that, as we said, the introduction of a ration of milk into the schoolchild's diet was followed by an improvement both in the structure and in the resistance of the teeth.
The danger that we have all seen is the danger of the falling off of the school dental service. It is true that the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Bevan) takes a contrary view. He says that the schoolchildren were being looked after by—were being merged into—the general dental service. [Interruption.] I am doing my best not to make any party point. That is a line which could reasonably be taken. The right hon. Gentleman said that the school dental service—this specialist service—was a poor thing and that it would have been better looked after by the general dental facilities which were open to the whole population.
The sinister thing is that that is not happening. Quite apart from the falling off in the numbers of dentists, to which my hon. Friend referred, we have the most interesting statistics in the Scottish Report and the recovery in the number of dentists. But these, it may be said, are theoretical points; how do we know that a smaller number of dentists meant a diminution in the health of teeth, and how do we know that a larger number of dentists will make an improvement in the teeth? We have not any direct evidence for the second, but we have for the first.
Recent reports—and this is the thing to which the Committee should give attention—have pointed out that in the last two years there is evidence that the previously satisfactory state of the schoolchildren's teeth was going back; that the teeth of the schoolchildren were not as good as they had been. That may be due to, I do not know what—a dozen things. At any rate, there is no doubt that there is an association; that what we thought was likely to happen is happening. Whether it is due to the shortage of dentists and dental treatment, I do not know, but the two things are going in parallel. There has been a falling off in the school dental treatment and, still more, in the school inspections, and there has been a falling off in the health of the teeth.
796 6.45 p.m.
Those two things make it very necessary to work together to try to change that balance. I fully sympathise with what the hon. Lady said: that one may be penny wise and pound foolish in this: that a penny spent on conservative treatment may save a pound later. But surely, of all places to begin conservative treatment, the teeth of the growing child is the first place.
If we are to believe the official reports which we have seen, that there is a falling off in the dental health of the schoolchildren, we must treat that as a failure at the beginning of our conservative treatment, at the beginning of the very foundation of the whole process, and then make every effort to see what can be done to remedy that before we give attention to the later stages.
It was that which weighed with me very much when I introduced the school milk. I could not see that within any reasonable time we were going to be able to get sufficient dental treatment to deal with the very bad state of the dental health in our industrial centres, of which the worst, I suppose, is Glasgow—the city which the hon. Lady and I know so well and which produced that vigorous figure the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, North-East (Mr. Baird). It is a city where the dental health is, perhaps, worse than in any other.
I certainly thought we had got to begin on the schoolchildren, and we did so. We got the improvement in the Mellanby Report, and the improvement in the second Mellanby Report. That improvement is beginning to be lost now.
§ Mr. Barnett Janner (Leicester, North-West)
I appreciate the point which the right hon. and gallant Gentleman is making, but has he any idea of the number of dental officers who were available at the beginning of 1950, 1951 and 1952, and the whole-time equivalent that they were spending upon school services? If he had those figures, I do not think he would be able to make the argument that he is now presenting. What about England and Wales?
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
I quote the right hon. Member for Ebbw Vale, who has made repeated speeches in the House saying that he had established, as he thought, a priority for the school dental 797 service, but that the thing had gone the other way and the priority in the school dental service was falling off. It is common knowledge amongst us all that it has been more difficult to get school dentists than it was before. Indeed, during the debates on the education Estimates, most vigorous attacks were made by certain hon. Members from the other side of the House on the ground that certain local authorities were not making provision for school dentistry; and it was found later, on going into the matter—
§ Notice taken that 40 Members were not present;
§ Committee counted, and 40 Members being present—
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
There is something rather disgraceful and very disgusting in trying to count the House out on the Health Service, and it shows how much authority we should give to the claims of sympathy which come in such nauseating profusion from certain hon. Members on the other side. It is particularly noticeable that the Member for Wolverhampton, North-East, has not troubled to come to keep the Committee in progress while his own subject, on which he himself had spoken and on which he professes such terrific enthusiasm, was being debated.
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
I say that hypocrisy has scarcely been more shockingly exhibited than in the action of an hon. Member on the other side of the Committee in calling the count.
§ The Chairman
I am already on my feet. The hon. Member must give way. I must ask the hon. Member to withdraw that remark about "slimy hypocrisy." I cannot allow it.
§ Mr. Manuel
Sir Charles, do I take it you are calling on me to withdraw a remark made to you or to somebody else?
§ The Chairman
That is not the point. I am not going to allow that remark to be made in the Committee, and the hon. Member must withdraw it.
§ Mr. Manuel
If it is out of order, I will certainly withdraw it; but it was meant to apply to the tactics being employed.
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
We can leave it, then. It was a comment upon the tactics that are being employed, and we can leave it to HANSARD to show who first employed those tactics. I do not wish to enter upon any acrid discussion with the hon. Member for Central Ayrshire. It may be that, both belonging to a somewhat turbulent race, we became slightly heated in the exchanges.
I would only say that the subject which we are discussing—and I do not wish to go into it at any length—is whether the place at which to begin conservation is not at the growing point of the teeth, and that brings us to the question of the redistribution of the dentists that has taken place. As to that, one need not go further than the statement made by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Greenock (Mr. McNeil) when he was responsible. He said last year:Before the Health Service Act came into operation there were in Great Britain about 50 per cent. more dentists in the dental educational system than there are at present.The hon. Gentleman the Member for Leicester, North-West (Mr. Janner) interrupted me a moment or two ago. May I have his attention? It is a little difficult to carry on debate when none of the hon. Members opposite is listening. I was referring to the hon. Member for Leicester, North-West, who challenged me.
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
Yes, well, it slows the Debate a little if one has to interrupt private conversations before we can get the public debate carried on. I was speaking of the question of the school dental officers, and drawing attention to what the right hon. Gentleman for Greenock said when he was responsible for this service only a year ago. He said:Before the Health Service Act came into operation there were in Great Britain about 50 per cent. more dentists in the dental educational system than there are at present. There have not been fewer dentists trained in the interval. The drain off has taken place almost exclusively to the National Health Service. We have made cuts—cuts which I think were completely justified and which, of course, arose from impartial examinations; 799 still, we did not fill the gap in that service. Today, we have some 800 in the service. We could quite easily employ twice that number. …"—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 24th April, 1951; Vol. 487, c. 335.]It seems to me that that is evidence of a very considerable gap, and gives full force to the point I was making—not at all an unreasonable point, and well within the knowledge of the Committee as a whole—that there has been a falling off of the dentists in the school dental service, and that more could be employed there with advantage. We need a reflux towards that service. I do not think that that is an exaggeration or an over-statement of the case. Our official reports show that at the growing point of the teeth, at the point of the health of the teeth of school children, special care must be taken. Unless we can do something about that, we shall not carry out the conservative treatment which we regard as the fundamental objective we are trying to secure.
A debate like this could go on for a considerable time. Nutrition was my original love, and mineral metabolism, and particularly calcium metabolism, was one of the subjects in which I wrote my thesis for my D.Sc., but there is nothing worse than a technician beginning to prate about the details of the technicalities of his subject to a lay audience, and, therefore, I only say that I am not bringing any of these things into the argument, but that I am only bringing forward a general argument, and I say that to proceed on these lines is a good and sound thing, and they are precisely what the right hon. Gentleman has put before us today.
§ Mr. Hastings
Although I have never been a practising dentist I have spent my professional life dealing with troubles in adjacent regions, and, therefore, I have had occasion to take a considerable interest in the teeth and diseases of the teeth and the adjacent regions. If I understand the arguments from the other side aright, they are something like this, that charges for dental treatment in adults may be an advantage if they succeed in increasing the treatment being given to school children and younger children. I hope that that is not to misinterpret them.
I agree entirely—I think that we shall all agree—that the most important thing 800 is conservative treatment, and that it is most important in the case of children. So far, I think, we are on common ground. But I would not assume—I do not think we ought to assume—that conservative treatment for those over 21 is of no value. I am considerably over 21, and I have a good many of my own teeth left, but that has been achieved only by continuous conservative treatment. Nor must we assume that the use of dentures in place of carious teeth, poisoning the system, is not a great advantage. Medical treatment, and time spent on the care of the teeth of adults, though I agree that it is of less importance than that spent on the care of children, is in no sense wasted.
What I was going to say was, that we are not going to drive many dentists from the treatment of adults to the treatment of children, and for this good reason, that the treatment of children, in medicine or dentistry, needs a special type of mind—a special experience, a special adaptability—which all people have not got. I know dentists who tried to enter the school dental service and who made a complete failure of it because they had not the type of mind required. Therefore, I suggest that we are not going, desirable as it may be, to drive as many dentists as we should like from the general dental service to the school dental service—and if we do, there will, at any rate, be some very evil results to follow.
Just one word about these charges. These charges which will tend, in whatever form they are, to prevent people seeking dental treatment as soon as it would be good for them to do. I do not think, as has been suggested, that many people go to the dentist without need for it. No one ever goes to a dentist without advantage. When teeth are examined it is astonishing how many unsuspected small spots of trouble are found by the dentist. We do not want to keep people from going to dentists if we can avoid it. Especially we ought not to prevent people going to dentists if they have toothache and bad pain, because pain is an indication of dental disease which means that treatment is necessary. What will be the effect of the imposition of charges on those people who have dental pain?
It is suggested in the Bill that they will have to pay £1, but they will think twice about going to the dentist when 801 they can go to their doctor and get treatment for nothing. People with dental pain will be driven by this charge to going to their doctors, who, being kindly people who want to do the best for their patients, will probably try to remove teeth which need not be removed, or could be saved. My experience is that it is disastrous when a doctor tries to remove teeth; a good many break off the teeth, and the condition of the patient is worse than it would otherwise have been. I maintain that any dental charge, at any age, which prevents people going for treatment as soon as they feel they need it is most undesirable.
§ Mr. Hugh Linstead (Putney)
Almost all that can be said on this subject has, I think, already been said.
§ Mr. Linstead
I was speaking hopefully.
I wish to draw attention to an aspect of this Clause which we have tended to overlook in the criticisms that have been made, and which it is as well we should not overlook when people for whose opinions we have considerable respect, such as those of the hon. Lady the Member for Lanarkshire, North (Miss Herbison), refer to the whole Bill as a vicious one. It is true that in this Clause we are doing something which is clumsy and crude, but we are doing it in an attempt to remedy a defect in the original National Health Service Act.
It is too easy for hon. Members opposite to forget that the dental service part of the National Health Service scheme was launched on the basis that there were two priority classes, the children and the expectant mothers, who would be specially catered for in respect of their dental needs. As the National Health Service has worked out, it is those priority classes who have been left without adequate dental treatment, and in this amending Bill we are endeavouring, in however clumsy a way, to remedy a defect in the parent Act—the defect that the priority classes have not been getting the priority they were promised.
Having said that, I now wish to draw attention to the Amendment, and to ask hon. Members opposite whether they have appreciated the precise terms they 802 are asking the Committee to endorse. At the moment the provision is for a series of charges with a "ceiling" at £1. If this Amendment is accepted we take out the series entirely, with the result that either £1 is paid or nothing is paid. I do not know whether hon. Gentlemen opposite wish to see that incorporated in the Bill, so that either £1 is paid or nothing.
§ Mr. Linstead
But that is not what this Amendment would achieve. The effect of accepting the Amendment would be that the charge will be either £1 or nothing; there is no gradation at all; and I am asking hon. Gentlemen opposite whether that is what they want to achieve.
§ Mr. A. Blenkinsop (Newcastle-upon-Tyne, East)
The hon. Gentleman will find on the Order Paper varying proposals—though whether or not they would have been called is another matter—by which various alternative proportions of the total sum above £1 might have been charged.
§ Mr. Linstead
At the moment we are discussing only this Amendment, by which we are invited to put into the Bill this very curious provision which says, in effect, that if the cost of the treatment is 20s. nothing is paid, but that if the cost is 20s. 6d. £1 is paid. I merely wish to draw the attention of the Committee to that, and again to ask those responsible for the Amendment whether that is the result they want to achieve?
§ Mr. Manuel
I should like to try to get into focus the position of the school dental service as I know it in Scotland. While the right hon. and gallant Member for Kelvingrove (Lieut.-Colonel Elliot) made an assertion about teeth going bad, he did not indicate whether he was referring to Scotland or to England and Wales. I can only deal adequately with the school dental service and the condition of children's teeth in Scotland.
As one who was a member of a local authority, who was for many years the public health convenor of a large county council, and on the education committee of that county council, I found that, in trying to build up a good school dental service in Scotland in the years prior to 803 the National Health Service Act, we were constantly under the handicap of not being able to recruit the necessary dentists to provide the sort of service we wanted.
The reason for that, in the main, was that, in the outside service—and this was more accentuated once the National Health Service started—there were better conditions, with a far higher salary range. Consequently, long before the Act came into operation, there was a denuding of the school dental service, and the dentists whom we were getting in the school dental service were the tail end of the dental profession, whether we liked it or not. Our school children in Scotland, therefore, were not getting a dental service which provided all the attention it ought to the conserving of their teeth, mainly through the combination of the two circumstances to which I have referred.
The cream of the dental profession was not within the school dental service and it had not the numbers because they were drawn into the general service. I thought, as a father myself, that, after the Health Act came into being, gradually the school dental service would go completely out. I thought that it was a double-tier placed on the general Health Service on the dental side that would become completely obsolete, because the provisions of the Act itself gave every man, women and child in the country the right to all the dental attention that was necessary. While we wanted the transitional period to be easy because people had accustomed themselves to having their children treated within the school dental service, I thought that it would gradually have passed out.
Now we have a statement by the right hon. and gallant Member for Kelvingrove that because there was a denuding of the school dental service, children's teeth have been getting worse. I am not accepting that for Scotland because I am not accepting that slight against our Scottish mothers, that they are not keen enough about their children's teeth to send them to the family dentist. The hon. Gentleman the Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain MacLeod), said that he had a family. Do I take it that he was not utilising the service for the conservation of teeth within the Health Service which his children could have had, and that he was 804 solely dependent on the school dental service which had become practically nonexistent?
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
I am interested in this point. My hon. Friend the Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain MacLeod), who is out of the Chamber for a short time, as is inevitable in a long sitting, said that he found as a father that it was easier to get appointments for his children with a practising dentist now, because the practising dentists were not run off their feet making dentures.
§ Mr. Manuel
My knowledge of my district in Ayrshire is that this has not been so. We have found the family dentists extremely considerate, and they give all the attention necessary to the children. I am thinking of children in my own particular street, and I know that numbers of parents are going to their family dentists and making appointments four times a year for their children to have their teeth examined, and that is going on constantly. If this new service is part of the Health Service, surely all that we need in the schools is to see that proper examinations take place and that the children are then directed to the family dentists.
I am not accepting that in Scotland people in the majority are neglectful of their children's teeth. I say that all that is necessary is that there should be some sort of dental examination in the schools, and that if conservation is necessary, the children should get it from their family dentists.
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
Will the hon. Gentleman carry on the argument with the right hon. Member for Greenock (Mr. McNeil), who said that a year ago we had 800 dentists and he would like to have double that number?
§ Mr. William Ross (Kilmarnock)
In the school dental service? There are only 90 in the whole of Scotland.
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
I am quoting the right hon. Member for Greenock. I have chapter and verse for it. Everyone knows these figures. They were quoted at length by my hon. Friend the Member for Enfield, West.
§ Mr. Manuel
The right hon. and gallant Member for Kelvingrove has put in a lot of little speeches today, and I hope that he will allow me to continue.
§ Mr. Raymond Gower (Barry)
Does not the hon. Gentleman really imagine that if we had only inspections in schools, we would have a very inferior type of dentist who would do nothing else but inspect teeth in schools?
§ 7.15 p.m.
§ Mr. Manuel
My case is that the Act is giving full cover to everybody, if they go for it. I am not prepared to accept that parents in Scotland, and, I believe, throughout Britain, can be placed in the category of not wanting to do the best for their children so far as dental treatment is concerned. If there were any parents of the type suggested by hon. Gentlemen opposite, we should have the protective service of examinations in the schools to find this out. I feel that it is an extravagance that we should have this whole dental service built up. Most parents are delighted with the attention which is given to their children's teeth, since the Act came in, by their own family dentists. I do not think that we should try to denigrate the value of the Health Act in relation to dental health.
The hon. Member for Enfield, West, is willing to hang arguments on to anything he can in order to try and scrimp money at the expense of conservation of teeth or anything else. He is against this Amendment which would allow of the conservation of our young people's teeth over school age up to £1. If he has his way, we shall not have this conservation unless there is payment, so it is not our young folk's teeth that he is concerned about; it is what he can get by this deterrent in a monetary way.
I very nearly not into trouble through talking about hypocrisy, but I am prepared to say that there is a great deal of hypocrisy in the arguments coming from the other side. I am not prepared to say that this is a slimy hypocrisy because that is the easier type—this is rough-hewn hypocrisy. I hope that we shall have less of this type of thing from hon. Gentle- 806 men opposite and a realisation that we ought to conserve people's teeth in the best way we can. I think that we can do that by strengthening the Health Act and by not mutilating and destroying it, as the present Bill is doing.
§ Mr. Powell
During most of his speech the hon. Member for Ayrshire, Central (Mr. Manuel) has developed a very interesting case for the euthanasia of the school dental service—for its reduction merely to an examination system. I do not propose to go into that interesting speculation, because it is not a point of view which is shared by the great majority of his hon. and right hon. Friends or by my hon. Friends. I see that he agrees with that.
I will begin by considering rather narrowly what I apprehend to be the effect of the Amendment if it were inserted in the Bill together with the consequential Amendments which appear later on the Order Paper. Although my hon. Friend the Member for Putney (Mr. Linstead) perhaps exaggerated the evil effects by taking the Amendment in isolation, nevertheless I believe his argument was substantially sound.
The result would be to substitute for charges which rise to a maximum of £1 and then cease to rise altogether, a charge which starts to be imposed when the work costs £1 and thereafter mounts pro rata. The effect of that would coincide with some of the effects about which the hon. Member for Barking (Mr. Hastings) was fearful—poor patients and their dentists deliberately undertaking the less effective and often less conservative type of work in order to avoid a charge. I hope hon. Members will consider that aspect before they press the Amendment.
Throughout the arguments for the Amendment emphasis has been upon conservative work, as though all dental work which costs only £1 was automatically conservative work. But dental work which costs up to £1 might just as well be devoted to extraction as to conservation. The effect of the Amendment is not to put a premium upon conservative work; it is to destroy the financial basis of the Clause. The financial effect alone would necessitate its rejection by my right hon. Friend.
The Opposition will then no doubt say, "We are back again in the old dilemma. On which leg are you standing? Are 807 you saying that the Clause ought to be in the Bill because it represents a saving of so many million pounds, or are you saying that it ought to be in the Bill because it produces this or that valuable effect within the Health Service?" I repeat that this is an entirely false dilemma. There is no contradiction at all between a Measure which results in a financial saving and a Measure which also produces an effect which is desirable in itself.
I shall pray in aid of that contention evidence of hon. Members opposite which bears very closely upon the Amendment. The late Minister of Health during the Committee stage of last year's Measure said, when dealing with the insertion of a time limit:The purpose is to make savings in these parts of the National Health Service—the provision of dentures and spectacles—to meet the rising expenditure on more important parts of the Service, such as hospitals.That is a very rational and sound financial argument. One must save money in one place in order to use it in another. But the right hon. Gentleman did not thereby debar himself from justifying his Measure by the positive effect which it would produce within the dental service. He elaborated some of the questions which he would be asking himself after a year or two's operation of last year's Act. He said:… how far have the charges—after this period has elapsed—been beneficial in improving the service for children?That shows that when the right hon. Gentleman last year imposed charges on dentures he had as his acknowledged object the improvement of the school dental service. I recommend that observation to the hon. Member for Barking who, as many others have done, argued that there was no natural connection between the manning up of the general dental service and the manning up of the school dental service. One of the questions which the right hon. Gentleman was going to ask himself when he came to review his Act was whether there had… been any improvement in the numbers of school dentists."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 2nd May, 1951; Vol. 487, c. 1311–2.]He must have been gratified by the evidence produced this afternoon of the success which he has already achieved through last year's Act.
§ Mr. Blenkinsop
What the hon. Gentleman always forgets is that, at the same time as his right hon. Friend says that he wants in this way to increase the number of school dentists, he and the Government make sure by financial measures that not enough funds are available at the Ministry of Education to provide the jobs.
§ Mr. Powell
I am sure the hon. Member knows that there has been a substantial increase in the Education Vote under the head of the school dental service. Figures have been given to show—
§ Mr. Powell
I am going to finish this part of my argument. It is generally acknowledged that during the last two years the numbers of school dentists have again begun to show a rise. They have risen over the country as a whole from a figure in the 700's to a figure in the 800's. We have additional financial provision in the Education Estimates for this year for the school dental service. We are thus applying the finance which we are in part obtaining from this source to the improvement of the school dental service.
§ The Chairman
If the hon. Member who is speaking will not give way other hon. Members must resume their seats.
§ Mr. Powell
This point, which I believe to be of crucial importance, namely, that the financial effects of a Measure and its practical ameliorative effects hang together and are not contradictory, really goes back to the father of all these changes in the Health Service, the Leader of the Opposition himself. When he announced the first of these charges on 24th October, 1949, he said:We propose to make a charge … The purpose is to reduce excessive and, in some cases, unnecessary resort to doctors and chemists. …809 That was the ameliorative effect. He went on to say:The resultant saving will contribute about £10 million, although this is not the primary purpose of the charge."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 24th October, 1949; Vol. 468, c. 1019.]So the Leader of the Opposition recognises that we can have a Measure that is devoted at one and the same time to a financial purpose and to a practical purpose.
I pass finally to the immediate question of the school dental service within the National Health Service as a whole. I want to focus the attention of the Committee upon a very remarkable statement—it has already been quoted, but I do not think it has yet been fully explained—by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Bevan) on the Second Reading of the National Health Service Act in 1946. On the 1946 Act, which in this respect was unamended, he used the following words:We have not enough dentists and it will therefore be neccessary for us, in the meantime, to give priority treatment to certain classes—expectant and nursing mothers, children, school children in particular, and later on, we hope, adolescents."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 30th April, 1946; Vol. 422, c. 45.]The right hon. Gentleman there forecast exactly the form of the National Health Service Act as amended by this Bill, because after the passage of this Bill that service for the first time gives dental priority to expectant and nursing mothers, children—school children in particular—and adolescents. The ambition which the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Ebbw Vale laid claim to back in April, 1946, is now to be fulfilled by my right hon. Friend.
It may strike hon. Members opposite, as it strikes me, that it is most remarkable that those words should have been used by the Minister in introducing a Bill which gave no priority whatsoever, but which threw free dental treatment open to the population. I was, therefore, hopeful when my hon. Friend the Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain MacLeod), invited the right hon. Gentleman for Ebbw Vale to explain how that priority had been secured in the 1946 Act. The reply was this:I could not in fact have provided the priority services without taking over many functions from the local authorities. I should have had to take them over entirely. It was 810 therefore much simpler to take the whole population into the dental service and work off the hump, and the hump has been worked off."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 27th March, 1952; Vol. 498; c. 897.]This is a new conception of priority. Priority was given to school children, nursing mothers and adolescents by leaving them at the end of the queue and dealing with everybody else in front of them.
§ The Chairman
I must ask the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, North-East (Mr. Baird), to resume his seat for—
§ Mr. Powell
When everyone else in front of them in the queue was dealt with, then at last priority was secured for the priority classes.
§ Mr. Powell
If that is what was meant by the words which I have quoted from the Second Reading speech of 1946, it is a most extraordinary description for throwing open the dental service to the whole population, to "work off the hump."
I am going to offer to the Committee—because this is a very important and puzzling matter—the only explanation I can think of as to how these words came into the right hon. Gentleman's Second Reading speech. They applied to a Bill which he found in the pigeon-holes of the Ministry of Health when he came into office in 1945 which would, in fact, have assured priority to those people by waiting until they were served before throwing the service open to the general public. That was the intention of the Coalition Government. He found that Bill and the Second Reading speech in draft. This paragraph, but not the accompanying provisions of the Bill, were taken over in extenso into his Second Reading speech. I offer that solution to hon. Gentlemen opposite for their personal and private study in the coming weeks along with the necessary documents.
811 We claim that by the provisions of this Clause my right hon. Friend for the first time is securing to these priority classes the priority to which everyone gives lip service. That is because that priority will be destroyed if this Amendment and the consequential Amendments are accepted that they must be rejected by the Committee.
§ Mr. Crookshank
I am not. It is the Amendment of the hon. Gentleman's party and it is not for me to withdraw it. I am not closing the debate. We have had an interesting debate and a fairly wide one, a good deal wider than I anticipated.
§ Mr. Crookshank
I was saying we have had a very interesting and rather wider debate than I had anticipated, but the speech which has just been made by my hon. Friend the Member for Wolverhampton, South-West (Mr. Powell), has brought us back to what is of real significance in the subject which we are discussing, and that is the means of getting the priorities right. He has pointed out that this Clause, when eventually passed with the Amendment which I hope we will adopt later, 812 should give priority to mothers, schoolchildren and adolescents. I am grateful to my hon. Friend for what he said about the drafting of the Bill, and I shall be very happy, as a result of this Bill, to see that come about.
Let us for one moment consider what is being done here. If the fees are under £1—and that is apart from the clinical examination because of our previous Amendment which is now incorporated in the Bill—the whole cost will be payable. If the amount is 15s., 17s. 6d. or whatever it may be for the course of treatment, it will have to be paid for by the patient, but if it is over £1 payment is limited to £1. The cost under the 1951 Act and under this Bill combined cannot exceed £4 5s.
The argument which this Amendment raises is whether that is the right way round to do it. If the fee is under £1, should the whole cost be payable by the patient or should the treatment be free up to £1 and then the patient pay all above it? That is the argument between us, but we must not overlook the fact that we are concerned here, quite apart from the important aspect of the priority classes, the conservative work and the purely dental side, to assist—I am sorry to say this again because I know how it irritates hon. Members opposite—in the recovery of our financial and economic situation. [HON. MEMBERS: "Ah!"] I knew that would set hon. Gentlemen off, but we must not lose sight of the fact that that is one of the elements of the argument we are presenting to the Committee. It is quite certain that if the Amendment proposed by the right hon. Gentleman were adopted, it might well mean the loss of the greater part of the estimated saving under this Bill.
§ Mr. Crookshank
I do not want to delay the Committee and there are several others who want to speak.
It is a fact that if the Amendment were adopted, the greater part of the estimated savings—and they are considerable, for they are estimated at £6 million during a full year—would be lost, and it is one of the objects of this Bill to secure those savings. In point of fact, the amount charged would, if the Amendment were adopted, largely be for the expensive crowns and inlays. If the first £1 is free, 813 there would be a strong inducement to patients to have only part of the necessary treatment done.
§ Mr. Crookshank
Only part of it. Patients would tend, human nature being what it is—I am not blaming anyone—to have treatment costing up to £1 and then they would stop. They would go again another time and have treatment up to nearly £1 and then stop. They would have a whole series of treatments free, each one after some interval of time, and each aggregating less than £1. It has surely always been the object of dentistry to persuade patients to make themselves fit dentally, but the cost of a whole series of partial treatments would largely be wasted and would not serve the purpose that those who go to dentists should have their teeth properly looked after.
§ Mr. Janner
I cannot follow at all the argument of the right hon. Gentleman. Is he suggesting that people should have dental treatment and pay for it, or that there are not enough dentists to give that treatment because they have to look after the younger people? I do not see the point of his argument.
§ Mr. Crookshank
I am sorry, but I am trying to deal with the Amendment of the right hon. Gentleman opposite to the effect that the first £1 should be free. I am saying, in reply, that there would be a strong inducement for people continuously to try to have treatment which did not exceed £1 every time they went for it. [Interruption.] I wish the hon. Member for Leicester, North-West, (Mr. Janner), would not keep interrupting. I am replying to the argument of his right hon. Friend by saying that there would be an inducement to people to continue to have short courses of treatment and never a complete course.
§ Mr. Crookshank
I really cannot get myself out of order and lead the Committee astray beyond the argument which the right hon. Gentleman opposite put before us. I think it might be assumed that the cost of a series of partial treatments 814 would largely be wasteful expenditure. To keep on going to the dentist and not getting the whole thing done at the time when it ought to be done would be wrong. By our suggestion that anything over £1 should be free we would get a situation that once that expenditure had been passed, there would be no deterrent on, or disincentive to, the person whose teeth ought to be attended to from going on and having them properly looked after. I quite agree that it is a matter of argument as to which course might in the long run end in the better conservation of teeth, but I think our way would do it better.
That is not the only consideration that I have in mind. We are attempting to deal with the financial situation as well. The Amendment would take away a great amount of what might be collected by this system.
§ Mr. Crookshank
It is a combination of factors which come into this matter, but by arranging the charges as we propose, we hope to achieve the priorities which the right hon. Member for Ebbw Vale (Mr. Bevan) referred to long ago and which have been mentioned by my hon. Friend. That is the issue between us. If it is true that some form of charge would act as an incentive for a better dental service, as the figures about the Scottish situation may or may not show—[Interruption.] They certainly show an increase in the school dental service.
§ Mr. Crookshank
Yes, certainly. The charges may or may not be a factor, but we have to build up after we have destroyed. We cannot destroy and then build up, except gradually. If, therefore, charges do turn out, when all these figures and other considerations have 815 been taken into account, to have the effect of improving the school dental service, as they may well have—I am not saying it conclusively because there are many unknown factors in the situation, but it looks as if it might be the case—and if we still want to benefit the priority classes and provide incentives which are directed to conserving the teeth of young children, which we all agree ought to be the highest priority of all; and if, as the right hon. Gentleman opposite says, his Amendment brings about greater incentives—those were his words—for older people, then the Amendment fails in its objective. By means of his Amendment the right hon. Gentleman would produce far smaller charges and pro tanto as charges help to bring about a better and larger school dental service, as in the Scottish case may be true, it seems to me to be an argument against the right hon. Gentleman's Amendment.
§ Mr. Baird
I am sure that the right hon. Gentleman would not want to mislead the Committee. The position is that since the charges for dental work were imposed, the number of school dentists has risen over the past year by 40. They now stand at under 900. In order to get an efficient school dental service we have been told that we need between 2,000 and 3,000 dentists. How long have we to wait? There is no proof that by the method proposed by the Government we shall get that establishment.
§ Mr. Crookshank
Of course, there is no proof, but as my hon. Friend has just said, we are moving up instead of moving down. Never mind whether the change is by an amount of 20, 30 or 40. If it is a change in the right direction, we should encourage it. The position was getting worse, but it is now getting better, and we want to see it get better still. I really cannot take the right hon. Gentleman's evidence as completely conclusive. It was he who said just now that dental health in our schools was better ever since the Health Service started, but that is completely contradicted by others who have spoken. In the last two years the teeth of school children have got worse owing to the priorities having gone wrong. We want 816 to see them get better. Of course all these things are not capable of proof for years to come. We can only observe tendencies today, but the tendencies are in the direction I have indicated.
I recommend the Committee not to accept the Amendment. Frankly, I do not think it would have the effect which any of us want to bring about, excepting, of course, that it would enable a far larger number of adults to continue to get free treatment. That in itself may or may not be a good thing, but there is no incentive in it towards a priority system. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Ebbw Vale said he wanted to get his priorities right, and I think we all do. We feel on the whole that the suggestions we have made in this Clause should have that effect. As I say, that is not capable of proof now, but it is a move in the right direction. Because I do not feel that the Amendment is a move in the right direction, having to recommend a choice one way or the other, I ask the Committee to accept our solution.
§ Miss Herbison
Before the Minister sits down, will he give me a reply to my question? We do not yet know whether this Bill is to apply to Scotland. We have doubts if it is to apply, because I am certain that the Joint Under-Secretary of State for Scotland, who has attended most of these debates, could have dealt with some of the Amendments much better than the Ministers who have dealt with them. Could we have an answer to that question?
§ Miss Herbison
I am not satisfied with that. I have adduced reasons why it seems to this side of the Committee that the Amendment we have down should be accepted, with the result that Scotland will be excluded. Is that Amendment to be accepted or is it not?
§ Mr. Logan
I have listened with great amusement to Members in various parts of the Committee, especially to the hon. Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain MacLeod), whose volubility was great but whose knowledge of the subject on which he was speaking was very small. I do not profess to be a dentist, neither do I profess to be a doctor, but I have some knowledge of the working of the 817 Insurance Acts from 1912 to 1948, having administered them nationally. We have had quotations today from books. I shall give quotations from life dealing with those who came to get treatment. Older hon. Members will remember—not younger Members, because they do not know anything, even today—the "ninepence for fourpence" when the Lloyd George Act was first introduced. That is going back a long time. When we consider the great benefits derived, not only by those who were compulsory contributors but also by those who were voluntary contributors, we find that the nation was much better for the treatment.
The right hon. and gallant Member for Kelvingrove (Lieut.-Colonel Elliot) seems, like myself, to be getting the worse for wear. If he would only reason as he did in his younger days, it would be much better for the Committee. I admit we are both getting past the mark, but we ought to be able to speak a little common sense to younger Members. Therefore, I hope I may be able to refresh his memory. The Act of the Liberal Party of that day was meant to benefit the whole nation—
§ Mr. Logan
No, I have sat here for four hours and I want to have my say. The hon. Member has had enough to say. That Act was passed to give benefits to the people through a health service, and I know the great benefit which it provided in the great industrial area of Liverpool. Our infirmaries, our hospitals, our surgeries were packed with people day and night wanting medical treatment simply because the dental service they had been receiving was either inadequate or non-existent.
How many people in poor areas ever had treatment for teeth? I know that children in decent homes were taught to 818 use the tooth brush, but in the homes of the poor they did not know what a tooth brush meant. They were more likely to use a sweeping brush to clean their teeth. But, as they were gradually educated, we found a better standard of health amongst the children in those areas. Instead of hon. Members quoting from journals and books, let them admit that the general health of our people is better than ever before.
It is a hard admission to make, but I admit that the Minister of Health knows his subject. I wish he did not. He knows what it is he is dealing with. When I put a question to the right hon. Gentleman, he replied, "Finance." Is not that what we are discussing? Is the system being abused? When I intervened I was asked whether I meant they should get a free service. There was no ambiguity in my reply, which was, "Yes, a free dental service for all who require it, because it is absolutely essential for the welfare of the people." I know that there is a difference of opinion in the Committee. Hon. Members talk about "conservation" and "priorities." It would be better to use words that the man and woman in the street can understand? Would it not be better to say, "We are giving no more pounds to the poor. If they want their teeth, let them pay for them. If they want attention, let them pay for it. We have paid enough and we will not give them any more."
§ Mr. Logan
That would be an honest statement of fact. I say to hon. Members of the party opposite that I do not classify them as knowing nothing. They do know. They are trained in business. I wish our people knew how to take care of things as well as they do.
I want our people, when they work and toil—in the field, in the factory, in the mines or in the ships—also to get the benefits of the wealth which they create: and if they are not able to pay, I want the State to pay for the things that are absolutely essential for the life of the man, woman and child. Therefore, it is a fair proposition to say that if a home which has a low income and which has children growing up, can find children 819 for the Army or for the Navy, for the defence of our land—I am not against having an army; but I want men and women to be healthy in order to be able to defend all that we hold sacred—attention should be paid to those who require our assistance in order to make them healthy.
I say this not for propaganda for the Labour Party, but from the viewpoint of investment. If parents, whether they be Tory or Labour, who have children are unable to pay for the care of them, the State should pay. I know that the plane of thought on the other side of the Committee is different. Those with wealth do not know what it means to those who are badly handicapped in life to have to part with a pound or two. The children of those who support the party opposite mean as much to the nation as do those of us on this side, and therefore my remarks apply to all, and not merely to one section of society.
From 35 years' experience I say that our best investment is to meet these incidental expenses. Members opposite say that we cannot afford the expense and that the charges are extravagant, but, surely, they have the power to regulate prices, as they have done with optical and dental treatment and dentures.
I am sorry that the Minister has stated that he cannot accept the Amendment. It is designed to meet a want which will be felt very greatly in thousands of homes, and especially by those in receipt of small wages. The outlay of £1 by homes whose income is only £5 or £6 a week will be a very heavy burden. The poor are found not only amongst the Tories, but with the Labour Party, and every parent will be anxious to know whether they are to be hit by this extra expense.
We on this side advocate that if the cost of treatment is up to £1, there should be no charge. That is simple enough, and that is the service I want to see. The nation would benefit as a result, and I trust that the Minister will accept our proposal, even though I have been, perhaps, a little vociferous and vehement, because I am earnest in what I say and I have seen these things and know what this added expense means to those who are poor. I know the difference between people who are happy and contented and 820 those who are downcast. If the Minister wants a healthy nation, he would be well advised to accept the Amendment.
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
I wish to correct an injustice which I unwittingly did to the right hon. Member for Greenock (Mr. McNeil), whose speech at Greenock in April of last year I quoted. When I quoted it first, I did so correctly in saying:there were in Great Britain about 50 per cent. more dentists in the dental educational system than there are at present.Afterwards, in an interchange, I gave the figure, which the right hon. Gentleman had quoted, of 800 as applying to Scotland. The first time I quoted the right hon. Gentleman, I did so correctly as applying to Great Britain. In my second quotation I did him an injustice, which I wish to correct.
§ Mr. Janner
We ought to direct our attention to the remarks that have been made by the Minister. I gathered that he was deeply concerned about the health of these children. He was also very deeply concerned about the financial gain that he would obtain from the Clause, and I am not altogether sure whether his concern was balanced more on the side of saving the money than on the side of saving the children's teeth.
If I were asked to explain the purpose of the Bill, I should answer that it was not to save the health of the people. It is to save a considerable sum of money at the expense of the health of the people. If the Minister wants to save the dental health of the country, why cannot he spend this money to provide more facilities for educating dentists and for giving more opportunity for training in the dental schools? He would then have available a larger number of dentists to deal with the children about whom he says be is so concerned, and he would not neglect those about whom we are concerned, including the children.
No one will be misled by the specious arguments that have been used by Members on the other side of the Committee to cover their tracks in this matter. They are out to reduce the amount that should be available for the benefit of the health of the people, and they are out to use for their purposes certain sums of money which would otherwise be available for benefiting the people's health. They are 821 trying to find ways and means by which they can cover their tracks, so that they will be able to argue that they are not reducing the benefits to the people, but that by taking away from them these vast sums of money they are creating priorities in the Health Services which are of such importance that they are of an overwhelming nature.
That will not do, and for many reasons. First, the statements of hon. Members opposite with regard to the numbers of the increase of dental surgeons who are available for children is not correct. Here I come to the argument of the right hon. and gallant Member for Kelvingrove (Lieut.-Colonel Elliot)—the right hon. and gallant Gentleman, but "friend" I should prefer to call him—who has gone entirely wrong in this matter. I should like to give him the figures about which I made an intervention when he gave way.
Early in January, 1951, the number of dental officers available in the school dental service was 856; in January, 1952, it was 899, but that is not the end of the story. The whole-time equivalents were 690.22 as against 712, which is a difference of only 22, and the whole of the Government's argument has been based upon that increase of 22 dental surgeons who are available for that particular service. Why has not the right hon. Gentleman told us that there is a Bill about to be introduced into this House—I do not know what its success will be—to increase the number of people available to deal with the country's dental service?
Why does he not tell us that there are still dentists with very high qualifications whose services were utilised during the war, but who, because they happen to have foreign qualifications, are not allowed today to take part in either the school dental service or any other? Why does he tell us about these 22 people, about whom he is so concerned, when, if he utilised the services of these qualified practitioners of very many years' experience, who were used in our hospitals and elsewhere during the war and who are still available today, he would gain as many, or possibly even more, in numbers than he is going to do by this method?
What is very unhappy is the fact that a large number of people who are going to be affected adversely by this Clause, ought to have treatment which they will not be able to afford. We have not had 822 a single concession from the Government yet in this Bill with regard to the variety of people in different positions in life who ought to be looked after and who ought to receive the fullest facilities for obtaining dental treatment free. Let me quote just one set of people concerning whom I had hoped earlier to be able to move an Amendment, and who do come within the scope of this charge which is now to be made. I am talking about those people who, by the unanimous decision of the House of Commons in 1944, were considered, and ever since have been considered, as very deserving cases.
When the Disabled Persons (Employment) Act, 1944, was being enacted by this House, there was unanimous approval that it was a Measure of tremendous value in order to improve the conditions of men and women who had been disabled and who came within the definition of "disabled person "in that Act—… a person who, on account of injury, disease or congenital deformity, is substantially handicapped in obtaining or keeping employment, or in undertaking work on his own account, of a kind which apart from that injury, disease or deformity would be suited to his age, experience and qualifications; and the expression 'disablement,' in relation to any person, shall be construed accordingly.These persons are now going to be asked, in the same way as everybody else, to pay the first pound for the dental service. It is taking money out of one pocket and putting it into another, because, in addition to the fact that they would be called upon to pay, what the Minister overlooks is that they would have to appeal to another quarter to receive the money with which to pay.
I have only one other point to make. Does not the Minister realise that, by means of the suggestions which I have made, and other suggestions which might emanate from his own fertile mind, the £6 million saving could be used to the advantage of the dental service of this country in a way which would bring not only health, but a considerable amount of happiness, to the whole of the community. Why is he attempting to deprive people of it?
He tells us that he is going to send people for clinical observation to the dentists free of charge and that he wants to encourage them to keep their teeth 823 healthy, but what on earth is the use of him sending people to dentists to be examined free of charge if he will not give them the facilities for being treated afterwards? The right hon. Gentleman is sending the people to be examined, and I assume he expects them to be treated if they need treatment. If they are treated, the services of dental surgeons will be used, and, therefore, the services of those dental surgeons to this extent will not be available to the children. If they are available for the children, they will not be available for the other persons.
Why cannot he give the people the opportunity of being examined free and facilities for free treatment? He cannot have it both ways. If he wants people to be treated, and he is inviting them to be examined free, he must give them the chance of being treated. If he gives them the chance of being treated, he must use the services of dental surgeons, whether the patients pay or they do not pay, and, if he employs dental surgeons for this purpose he cannot employ the same surgeons for the children, at the same time.
I put that to him, and I ask him to think again, in order to give the people of this country the opportunity of continuing to receive the treatment they require, without cutting down the educational system or reducing the opportunities for students, and I am sure that he will get a dental service capable of doing what is necessary in the country, instead of robbing the people of important services as he now proposes to do.
§ Mr. Angus Maude (Ealing, South)
After listening to the speech of the hon. Member for Leicester, North-West (Mr. Janner), one feels that, after almost years in which this question of the finances of the National Health Service has been debated, both in health debates, Budget debates and Finance Bill debates, there seems to be almost no limit to the capacity of hon. Members opposite to listen to the facts without absorbing any of them at all.
It seems altogether incredible that the hon. Member for Leicester, North-West, still believes that what my right hon. Friend is seeking to do in this Bill is simply to take this money from patients in order, apparently, to devote it to something outside the Health Service 824 altogether. If the hon. Gentleman has understood what the last two Labour Chancellors of the Exchequer and his right hon. Friend the Member for Middlesbrough, East (Mr. Marquand), have been saying in the last Parliament, he should by now have got it into his head that the purpose of the financial policy of the late Government—and of this Government—is to maintain the ceiling on the Health Service Expenditure at the figure at which it was fixed by the late Sir Stafford Cripps.
Since expenses in every branch of the service have been and still are steadily rising, if charges are not imposed in some directions in the service, then it will inevitably follow that the services provided will have to be reduced in other branches of the National Health Service. It is no good the hon. Member for Leicester, North-West, talking about the £6 million which could be used profitably in the dental service. He has got to show how, if this Amendment was carried, he would find the £6 million within the ceiling of the Health Service. Neither he nor any one of his hon. and right hon. Friends has told the Committee whether they would reduce the provisions of the hospital service.
§ Mr. Messer
May I interrupt the hon. Gentleman? If he will read my speech in the debate on the Bill, he will find that I suggested ways by which that money could be saved.
§ Mr. Maude
I remember the hon. Gentleman's speech, and I withdraw that remark in his case. But, of course, the hon. Member for Leicester, North-West, has no such alibi. It is perfectly obvious from his speech that he has not listened to any of the arguments used, and he has entirely misconceived the purpose of the Bill. The hon. Member for Liverpool, Scotland (Mr. Logan), to whom we always listen with great interest and respect because of his obvious sincerity, has failed to grasp the points at issue. He referred to the 1911 Act and stated quite erroneously that it applied to the whole population. He got on by easy stages to the 1948 Act and, as I understood him, suggested that a means test should be imposed upon anybody who could not afford to pay for the health services.
In addition, the hon. Member said that it was desirable that the Health Service 825 should be entirely free—a slightly inconsistent statement. But he still did not explain how he voted in favour of the charges on dentures and spectacles in the 1951 Bill. It surely should be obvious to him and to the hon. Member for Leicester, North-West that the action taken by the Government and by them in the course of debates and Divisions on the 1951 Bill make it entirely nonsensical for them to give us their tales of suffering tonight.
They must realise the purpose of this Bill. They must realise, as my hon. Friend the Member for Wolverhampton, South-West (Mr. Powell) and my hon. Friend the Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain MacLeod) have repeatedly stated, that it is perfectly possible for a financial provision of this kind to be consistent with, and indeed directed towards, improving a part of this Service. That is the point of this Bill, and if this Amendment were carried it would make complete nonsense of this Clause.
§ Mr. Ross
The speech of the hon. Member for Ealing, South (Mr. Maude) was probably the first we have heard from the other side of the House which had in it the authentic voice of Toryism, because there was in it none of the delightful and pleasant irrelevances about boosting up the school dental service and there was nothing about getting the priorities right.
§ Mr. Ross
Yes. We have had exactly the same point made by at least two other hon. Members, but they also gave us the impression that we could save money and at the same time do something that was good in itself. We have not had very 826 many figures from the other side of the Committee on the deterrent effect on the general service and how beneficial these charges will be in their effect on the school dental service. The only figures we had were given by the right hon. and gallant Gentleman the Member for Kelvingrove (Lieut.-Colonel Elliot) and about a quarter of an hour after he had given them he had cause to get up and apologise to the Secretary of State for Scotland for them.
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
Utter rubbish. My figures were perfectly correct, except a second quotation.
§ Mr. Ross
I entirely agree with the right hon. and gallant Gentleman that his figures were utter rubbish. The hon. Member for Enfield, West (Mr. Iain MacLeod), whose figures were supposedly quoted by the right hon. and gallant Gentleman, called in aid certain aspects of development in the Scottish dental service and implied that the deterrent effect of the charges last year resulted in building up the school dental service and, by implication, playing down the general dental service.
What are the facts? As the Report of the Department of Health for Scotland states, the facts are that there has been an increase in the number of persons in the school dental service; but the Report said that the first reason has nothing at all to do with charges but has to do with better salaries. The actual increase is from the marvellous figure of 94 for the whole of Scotland to 104. But what is the picture on the other side—the general dental service? That figure has gone up from 1,251 dentists in January, 1951, to 1,254.
§ Mr. Ross
But it means that the supposedly great deterrent effect of the charges on dentures, which has reduced the expenditure on dentures by the Scottish Department from just over 60 per cent. of the total expenditure to over 30 per cent., has not had the effect of reducing the number of dentists in the general dental service. Actually it has increased it. Obviously, there is scope for more work and that work should be dental conservation treatment. The effect of what the Government are now proposing will be to reduce the possibility 827 of dental conservation treatment for people who need it very badly.
There is no country in which the neglect of teeth has shown itself more in ill-health and in bad teeth than my own country. I say that with regret and reluctance. Anyone who has taught, as I have, in the Gorbals in Glasgow, and moved around in the industrial areas of that city, knows quite well that the people of Scotland did not take any step to conserve their teeth because they could not afford it.
Incidentally, why is the Secretary of State for Scotland not here and why has he not spoken during this debate? Because the Government would not let him speak, as he let the cat out of the bag on Second Reading when he said that the reason for this Bill is that if people spend money on these charges they will not have the money to spend on other things. Judging by the statement made by the Minister of Agriculture today, people who spend more and more on food will also have less to spend on these essential services.
The dental and general health of the people of Scotland will start to decline. There have been statements about the deterioration of the health of teeth in the last two or three years, but not a single figure has been produced to prove it. The Report of the Department of Health for Scotland shows that of the children inspected in Scottish schools, just over 2 per cent. had any defect in their teeth, and those defects could easily be remedied. Every fact and figure produced by the Government has been absolutely refuted.
In the interests of the general wellbeing of the people of this country, the Government should reconsider their decision. The Leader of the House said that it was a question of doing something in two different ways. What he was doing was to choose, as he thought, the better way; but what he was really doing was to choose the cheaper way. Obviously, if the people have to weigh up financial considerations before deciding whether they can afford to go to the dentist and have their teeth treated, I am convinced that this Bill will be an incentive to the decay of teeth and not an 828 incentive to the preservation of the health of our people. Anyone who is interested in the well-being of the country and in maintaining the fine standards of health that we have built up over the past five years—
§ Mr. Ross
It may be nonsense to the hon. Gentleman, but the fact that the children of Glasgow are today heavier and taller and that their teeth are better is the proof of what is right or wrong. It proves that hon. Members opposite are wrong. It proves that the Prime Minister is wrong and that he is failing in his duty to look after the well-being of the people.
§ Mr. John Rankin (Glasgow, Tradeston)
I am grateful for the opportunity to say a few words on this Amendment even at this late hour, because I, with a number of my Scottish colleagues, have an Amendment on the Paper whose effect would be much the same as this one which we are now discussing, except perhaps it would be more drastic. It would remove Scotland entirely from the effects of this Bill, in respect not merely of dentures but the whole of the provisions of the Bill.
I want to advance reasons why that Amendment might still be considered by the Government. The question has been asked whether this Measure applies to Scotland. I think the title of the Bill makes it clear that the Measure does apply to Scotland. This is causing a great deal of bitterness in Scotland because by this amending Bill the Minister is fundamentally and permanently changing the existing Scottish Act. He is treating it as an appendage of the English Measure. I would remind him that the two principal Acts, the English and the Scottish Acts, were brought in separately, and I think it is wrong that he should seek in one amending Measure to alter fundamentally the Scottish Act.
The approach to these two Measures was entirely different. The Scottish Bill was framed largely on a report of a special committee called the Scottish Health Services Committee, which reported in 1936, and in one part of its conclusions it stated that the vital statistics of Scotland were disquietingly less favourable—
§ It being Twenty-four Minutes to Nine o'Clock, The CHAIRMAN proceeded, pursuant to Order, to put forthwith the Question already proposed from the Chair.830
§ Question put, "That those words be there inserted."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 283; Noes, 303.833
|Division No. 98.]||AYES||[8.37 p.m.|
|Acland, Sir Richard||Evans, Stanley (Wednesbury)||Lipton, Lt.-Col. M.|
|Adams, Richard||Ewart, R.||Logan, D. G.|
|Albu, A. H.||Fernyhough, E.||MacColl, J. E.|
|Allen, Arthur (Bosworth)||Field, W. J.||McGhee, H. G.|
|Allen, Scholefield (Crewe)||Fienburgh, W.||McGovern, J.|
|Anderson, Alexander (Motherwell)||Finch, H. J.||McInnes, J.|
|Anderson, Frank (Whitehaven)||Fletcher, Eric (Islington, E.)||McKay, John (Wallsend)|
|Attlee, Rt. Hon. C. R.||Follick, M.||McLeavy, F.|
|Awbery, S. S.||Foot, M. M.||MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles)|
|Ayles, W. H.||Forman, J. C.||McNeil, Rt. Hon. H.|
|Bacon, Miss Alice||Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton)||MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling)|
|Baird, J.||Freeman, John (Watford)||Mainwaring, W. H.|
|Balfour, A.||Gaitskell, Rt. Hon. H. T. N.||Mallalieu, E. L. (Brigg)|
|Barnes, Rt. Hon. A. J.||Gibson, C. W.||Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Huddersfield, E.)|
|Bartley, P.||Glanville, James||Mann, Mrs. Jean|
|Bellenger, Rt. Hon. F. J.||Gooch, E. G.||Manuel, A. C.|
|Bence, C. R.||Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C.||Marquand, Rt. Hon. H. A.|
|Benn, Wedgwood||Greenwood, Anthony (Rossendale)||Mayhew, C. P.|
|Benson, G.||Greenwood, Rt. Hon. Arthur (Wakefield)||Mellish, R. J.|
|Beswick, F.||Grenfell, Rt. Hon. D. R.||Messer, F.|
|Bevan, Rt. Hon. A. (Ebbw Vale)||Grey, C. F.||Mikardo, Ian|
|Bing, G. H. C.||Griffiths, David (Rother Valley)||Mitchison, G. R.|
|Blackburn, F.||Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Llanelly)||Monslow, W.|
|Blenkinsop, A.||Griffiths, William (Exchange)||Moody, A. S.|
|Blyton, W. R.||Grimond, J.||Morgan, Dr. H. B. W.|
|Boardman, H.||Hale, Leslie (Oldham, W.)||Morley, R.|
|Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G.||Hall, Rt. Hon. Glenvil (Colne Valley)||Morris, Percy (Swansea, W.)|
|Bowen, E. R.||Hall, John (Gateshead, W.)||Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Lewisham, S.)|
|Bowles, F. G.||Hamilton, W. W.||Mort, D. L.|
|Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth||Hannan, W.||Moyle, A.|
|Brockway, A. F.||Hardy, E. A.||Mulley, F. W.|
|Brook, Dryden (Halifax)||Hargreaves, A.||Murray, J. D.|
|Broughton, Dr. A. D. D.||Harrison, J. (Nottingham, E.)||Nally, W.|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. George (Belper)||Hastings, S.||Neal, Harold (Bolsover)|
|Brown, Thomas (Ince)||Hayman, F. H.||O'Brien, T.|
|Burke, W. A.||Healey, Denis (Leeds, S. E.)||Oldfield, W. H.|
|Burton, Miss F. E.||Henderson, Rt. Hon. A. (Rowley Bridge)||Oliver, G. H.|
|Butler, Herbert (Hackney, S.)||Herbison, Miss M.||Orbach, M.|
|Callaghan, L. J.||Hewitson, Capt. M.||Oswald, T.|
|Castle, Mrs. B. A.||Hobson, C. R.||Padley, W. E.|
|Champion, A. J.||Holman, P.||Paget, R. T.|
|Chapman, W. D.||Holt, A. F.||Paling, Rt. Hon. W. (Deame Valley)|
|Chetwynd, G. R.||Houghton, Douglas||Paling, Will T. (Dewsbury)|
|Clunie, J.||Hoy, J. H.||Pannell, Charles.|
|Cocks, F. S.||Hubbard, T. F.||Pargiter, G. A.|
|Coldrick, W.||Hudson, James, (Ealing, N.)||Parker, J.|
|Collick, P. H.||Hughes, Gledwyn (Anglesey)||Paton, J.|
|Cook, T. F.||Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire)||Pearson, A.|
|Corbel, Mrs. Freda||Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.)||Pearl, T. F.|
|Cove, W. G.||Hynd, H. (Accrington)||Plummer, Sir Leslie|
|Craddock, George (Bradford, S.)||Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe)||Popplewell, E.|
|Crosland, C. A. R.||Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill)||Porter, G.|
|Crossman, R. H. S.||Irving, W. J. (Wood Green)||Price, Joseph T. (Westhoughton)|
|Cullen, Mrs. A.||Isaacs, Rt. Hon. G. A.||Proctor, W. T.|
|Daines, P.||Janner, B.||Pryde, D. J.|
|Dalton, Rt. Hon. H.||Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T.||Rankin, John|
|Darling, George (Hillsborough)||Jeger, George (Goole)||Reeves, J.|
|Davies, A. Edward (Stoke, N.)||Jeger, Dr. Santo (St. Pancras, S.)||Reid, Thomas (Swindon)|
|Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.)||Jenkins, R. H. (Stechford)||Reid, William (Camlachie)|
|Davies, Harold (Leek)||Johnson, James (Rugby)||Rhodes, H.|
|Davies, Stephen (Merthyr)||Johnston, Douglas (Paisley)||Richards, R.|
|de Freitas, Geoffrey||Jones, David (Hartlepool)||Robens, Rt. Hon. A.|
|Deer, G.||Jones, Jack (Rotherham)||Roberts, Albert (Normanton)|
|Delargy, H. J.||Keenan, W.||Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvobshire)|
|Dodds, N. N.||Kenyon, C.||Rogers, George (Kensington, N.)|
|Donnelly, D. L.||Key, Rt. Hon. C. W.||Ross, William|
|Driberg, T. E. N.||King, Dr. H. M.||Royle, C.|
|Dugdale, Rt. Hon. John (W. Bromwich)||Kinley, J.||Schofield, S. (Barnsley)|
|Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C.||Lee, Frederick (Newton)||Shackleton, E. A. A.|
|Edelman, M.||Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannock)||Shawcross, Rt. Hon. Sir Hartley|
|Edwards, John (Brighouse)||Lever, Harold (Cheetham)||Shinwell, Rt. Hon. E.|
|Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly)||Lever, Leslie (Ardwick)||Short, E. W.|
|Evans, Albert (Islington, S. W.)||Lewis, Arthur||Shurmer, P. L. E.|
|Evans, Edward (Lowestoft)||Lindgren, G. S.||Silverman, Julius (Erdington)|
|Silverman, Sydney (Nelson)||Thomas, George (Cardiff)||White, Henry (Derbyshire, N. E.)|
|Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)||Thomas, Iorwerth (Rhondda, W.)||Whiteley, Rt. Hon. W.|
|Slater, J.||Thomas, Ivor Owen (Wrekin)||Wigg, George|
|Smith, Ellis (Stoke, S.)||Thorneycroft, Harry (Clayton)||Wilcock, Group Captain C. A. B.|
|Smith, Norman (Nottingham, S.)||Thurtle, Ernest||Wilkins, W. A.|
|Snow, J. W.||Timmons, J.||Willey, Frederick (Sunderland, N.)|
|Sorensen, R. W.||Tomney, F.||Willey, Octavius (Cleveland)|
|Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank||Turner-Samuels, M.||Williams, David (Neath)|
|Sparks, J. A.||Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn||Williams, Rev. Llywelyn (Abertillery)|
|Steele, T.||Usborne, H. C.||Williams, Ronald (Wigan)|
|Stewart, Michael (Fulham, E.)||Viant, S. P.||Williams, W. R. (Droylsden)|
|Stokes, Rt. Hon. R. R.||Wade, D. W.||Williams, W. T. (Hammersmith, S.)|
|Strachey, Rt. Hon. J.||Wallace, H. W.||Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)|
|Strauss, Rt. Hon. George (Vauxhall)||Watkins, T. E.||Winterbottom, Ian (Nottingham, C.)|
|Summerskill, Rt. Hon. E.||Webb, Rt. Hon. M. (Bradford, C.)||Winterbottom, Richard (Brighlside)|
|Swingler, S. T.||Weitzman, D.||Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.|
|Sylvester, G. O.||Wells, Percy (Faversham)||Wyatt, W. L.|
|Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)||Wells, William (Walsall)||Yates, V. F.|
|Taylor, John (West Lothian)||West, D. G.||Younger, Rt. Hon. K.|
|Taylor, Rt. Hon. Robert (Morpeth)||Wheatley, Rt. Hon. John|
|Thomas, David (Aberdare)||White, Mrs. Eirene (E. Flint)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES:|
|Mr. Bowden and Mr. Holmes.|
|Aitken, W. T.||Crookshank, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. F. C.||Higgs, J. M. C.|
|Allan, R. A. (Paddington, S.)||Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E.||Hill, Dr. Charles (Luton)|
|Alport, C. J. M.||Crouch, R. F.||Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe)|
|Amory, Heathcoat (Tiverton)||Crowder, John E. (Finchley)||Hinchingbrooke, Viscount|
|Anstruther-Gray, Major W. J.||Crowder, Petre (Ruislip—Northwood)||Hirst, Geoffrey|
|Arbuthnot, John||Cuthbert, W. N.||Holland-Martin, C. J.|
|Ashton, H. (Chelmsford)||Darling, Sir William (Edinburgh, S.)||Hollis, M. C.|
|Assheton, Rt. Hon. R. (Blackburn, W.)||Davidson, Viscountess||Holmes, Sir Stanley (Harwich)|
|Astor, Hon. J. J. (Plymouth, Sutton)||Deedes, W. F.||Hope, Lord John|
|Astor, Hon. W. W. (Bucks, Wycombe)||Rigby, S. Wingfield||Hopkinson, Henry|
|Baker, P. A. D.||Dodds-Parker, A. D.||Hornsby-Smith, Miss M. P.|
|Baldock, Lt.-Cmdr. J. M.||Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. McA.||Horsbrugh, Rt. Hon. Florence|
|Baldwin, A. E.||Donner, P. W.||Howard, Gerald (Cambrideshire)|
|Banks, Col. C.||Doughty, C. J. A.||Howard, Greville (St. Ives)|
|Barber, A. P. L.||Douglas-Hamilton, Lord Malcolm||Hudson, Sir Austin (Lewisham, N.)|
|Barlow, Sir John||Drayson, G. B.||Hudson, W. R. A. (Hull, N.)|
|Baxter, A. B.||Dugdale, Maj. Rt. Hn. Sir T. (Richmond)||Hulbert, Wing Cmdr. N. J.|
|Beach, Maj. Hicks||Duncan, Capt. J. A. L.||Hurd, A. R.|
|Beamish, Maj. Tufton||Duthie, W. S.||Hutchinson, Sir Geoffrey (Ilford, N.)|
|Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.)||Eccles, Rt. Hon. D. M.||Hutchison, Lt.-Com. Clark (E'b'rgh W.)|
|Bell, Ronald (Bucks, S.)||Eden, Rt. Hon. A.||Hutchison, James (Scotstoun)|
|Bennett, F. M. (Reading, N.)||Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E.||Hyde, Lt.-Col. H. M.|
|Bennett, Sir Peter (Edgbaston)||Erroll, F. J.||Hylton-Foster, H. B. H.|
|Bennett, Dr. Reginald (Gosport)||Fell, A.||Jenkins, R. C. D. (Dulwich)|
|Bennett, William (Woodside)||Finlay, Graeme||Jennings, R.|
|Bevins, J. R. (Toxteth)||Fisher, Nigel||Johnson, Eric (Blackley)|
|Birch, Nigel||Fleetwood-Hesketh, R. F.||Johnson, Howard (Kemptown)|
|Bishop, F. P.||Fletcher, Walter (Bury)||Jones, A. (Hall Green)|
|Black, C. W.||Fletcher-Cooke, C.||Johnson-Hicks, Hon. L. W.|
|Bocthby, R. J. G.||Fort, R.||Kaberry, D.|
|Bossom, A. C.||Fraser, Hon. Hugh (Stone)||Keeling, Sir Edward|
|Boyd-Carpenter, J. A.||Fraser, Sir Ian (Morecambe & Lonsdale)||Kerr, H. W. (Cambridge)|
|Boyle, Sir Edward||Fyfe, Rt. Hon. Sir David Maxwell||Lambert, Hon. G.|
|Braine, B. R.||Gage, C. H.||Lambton, Viscount|
|Braithwaite, Sir Albert (Harrow, W.)||Galbraith, Cmdr. T. D. (Pollak)||Lancaster, Col. C. G.|
|Braithwaite, Lt.-Cdr. G. (Bristol, N. W.)||Galbraith, T. G. D. (Hillhead)||Langford-Holt, J. A.|
|Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. W. H.||Gammans, L. D.||Law, Rt. Hon. R. K.|
|Brooke, Henry (Hampstead)||Garner-Evans, E. H.||Leather, E. H. C.|
|Brooman-White, R. C.||George, Rt. Hon. Maj. G. Lloyd||Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H.|
|Browne, Jack (Govan)||Glyn, Sir Ralph||Legh, P. R. (Petersheld)|
|Buchan-Hepburn, Rt. Hon. P. G. T.||Godber, J. B.||Lindsay, Martin|
|Bullard, D. G.||Gomme-Duncan, Col. A.||Linstead, H. N.|
|Bullock, Capt. M.||Gough, C. F. H.||Lloyd, Maj. Guy (Renfrew, E.)|
|Bullus, Wing-Commander E. E.||Gower, H. R.||Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral)|
|Burden, F. F. A.||Graham, Sir Fergus||Lockwood, Lt.-Col J. C.|
|Butcher, H. W.||Gridley, Sir Arnold||Longden, Gilbert (Herts, S. W.)|
|Carr, Robert (Mitcham)||Grimston, Hon. John (St. Albans)||Low, A. R. W.|
|Carson, Hon. E.||Grimston, Sir Robert (Westbury)||Lucas, Sir Jocelyn (Portsmouth, S.)|
|Cary, Sir Robert||Harden, J. R. E.||Lucas, P. B. (Brantford)|
|Channon, H.||Hare, Hon. J. H.||Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh|
|Churchill, Rt. Hon. W. S.||Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N.)||McAdden, S. J.|
|Clarke, Col. Ralph (East Grinstead)||Harris, Reader (Heston)||McCallum, Major D.|
|Clarke, Brig. Terence (Portsmouth, W.)||Harrison, Col. J. H. (Eye)||McCorquodale, Rt. Hon. M. S.|
|Clyde, Rt. Hon. J. L.||Harvey, Air Cdre. A. V. (Macclesfield)||Macdonald, Sir Peter (I. of Wight)|
|Cole, Norman||Harvey, Ian (Harrow, E.)||Mackeson, Brig. H. R.|
|Colegate, W. A.||Harvie-Watt, Sir George||McKibbin, A. J.|
|Conant, Maj. R. J. E.||Hay, John||McKie, J. H. (Galloway)|
|Cooper, Sqn. Ldr. Albert||Head, Rt. Hon. A. H.||MacLeod, Iain (Enfield, W.)|
|Cooper-Key, E. M.||Heald, Sir Lionel||MacLeod, John (Ross and Cromarty)|
|Craddock, Beresford (Spelthorne)||Heath, Edwarl||Macmillan, Rt. Hon. Harold (Bromley)|
|Cranborne, Viscount||Henderson, John (Cathcart)||Macpherson, Maj. Niall (Dumfries)|
|Maitland, Comdr. J. F. W. (Horncastle)||Pitman, I. J.||Stoddart-Scott, Col. M.|
|Maitland, Patrick (Lanark)||Powell, J. Enoch||Storey, S.|
|Manningham-Buller, Sir R. E.||Price, Henry (Lewisham, W.)||Strauss, Henry (Norwich, S.)|
|Markham, Major S. F.||Prior-Palmer, Brig. O. L.||Stuart, Rt. Hon. James (Moray)|
|Marlowe, A. A. H.||Profumo, J. D.||Studholme, H. G.|
|Marples, A. E.||Raikes, H. V.||Sutcliffe, H.|
|Marshall, Douglas (Bodmin)||Rayner, Brig. R.||Taylor, Charles (Eastbourne)|
|Marshall, Sidney (Sutton)||Redmayne, E.||Taylor, William (Bradford, N.)|
|Maude, Angus||Remnant, Hon. P.||Teeling, W.|
|Maudling, R.||Renton, D. L. M.||Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. P. L. (Hereford)|
|Maydon, Lt. Cmdr. S. L. C.||Roberts, Peter (Heeley)||Thomas, P. J. M. (Conway)|
|Medlicott, Brig. F.||Robertson, Sir David||Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)|
|Mellor, Sir John||Robinson, Roland (Blackpool, S.)||Thorneycroft, R. Hn. Peter (Monmouth)|
|Molson, A. H. E.||Robson-Brown, W.||Thornton-Kemsley, Col. C. N.|
|Monckton, Rt. Hon. Sir Walter||Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks)||Tilney, John|
|Moore, Lt.-Col. Sir Thomas||Roper, Sir Harold||Turner, H. F. L.|
|Morrison, John (Salisbury)||Ropner, Col. Sir Leonard||Turton, R. H.|
|Mott-Radclyffe, C. E.||Russell, R. S.||Tweedsmuir, Lady|
|Nabarro, G. D. N.||Ryder, Capt R. E. D.||Vane, W. M. F.|
|Nicholls, Harmar||Salter, Rt. Hon. Sir Arthur||Vaughan-Morgan, J. K.|
|Nicholson, Godfrey (Farnham)||Sandys, Rt. Hon. D.||Vesper, D. F.|
|Nicolson, Nigel (Bournemouth, E.)||Savory, Prof. Sir Douglas||Wakefield, Sir. Wavell (Marylebone)|
|Nield, Basil (Chester)||Schofield, Lt.-Col. W. (Rochdale)||Walker-Smith, D. C.|
|Noble, Cmdr. A. H. P.||Scott, R. Donald||Ward, Hon. George (Worcester)|
|Nugent, G. R. H.||Scott-Miller, Cmdr. R.||Ward, Miss I. (Tynemouth)|
|Nutting, Anthony||Shepherd, William||Waterhouse, Capt. Rt. Hon. C.|
|Oakshott, H. D.||Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.)||Watkinson, H. A.|
|Odey, G. W.||Smiles, Lt.-Col. Sir Walter||Webbe, Sir H. (London & Westminster)|
|O'Neill, Rt. Hon. Sir H. (Antrim, N.)||Smithers, Peter (Winchester)||Wellwood, W.|
|Ormsby-Gore, Hon. W. D.||Smithers, Sir Waldron (Orpington)||White, Baker (Canterbury)|
|Orr, Capt. L. P. S.||Smyth, Brig. J. G. (Norwood)||Williams, Rt. Hon. Charles (Torquay)|
|Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.)||Snadden, W. McN.||Williams, Gerald (Tonbridge)|
|Orr-Ewing, Ian L. (Weston-super-Mare)||Soames, Capt. C.||Williams, Sir Herbert (Croydon, E.)|
|Osborne, C.||Spearman, A. C. M.||Williams, R. Dudley (Exeter)|
|Partridge, E.||Speir, R. M.||Wills, G.|
|Peake, Rt. Hon. O.||Spence, H. R. (Aberdeenshire, W.)||Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)|
|Perkins, W. R. D.||Spens, Sir Patrick (Kensington, S.)||Wood, Hon. R.|
|Peto, Brig. C. H. M.||Stanley, Capt. Hon. Richard||York, C.|
|Peyton, J. W. W.||Stevens, G. P.|
|Pickthorn, K. W. M.||Steward, W. A. (Woolwich, W.)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES:|
|Pilkington, Capt R. A.||Stewart, Henderson (Fife, E.)||Mr. Drewe and|
|Mr. Richard Thompson.|
§ The CHAIRMAN then proceeded to put forthwith the Questions on Amendments, moved by a Minister of the Crown, of which notice had been given, to Clause 2 and the further Question necessary to complete the Proceedings on that Clause.
§ Amendments made: In page 2, line 26, leave out from the first "of," to "to," and insert: "dentures or the addition of teeth bands or wires."834
§ In line 29, leave out "sixteen," and insert "twenty-one."
§ In line 29, leave out from "or," to the end of line 32.—[Mr. Crookshank.]
§ Motion made, and Question put, "That the Clause, as amended, stand part of the Bill."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 298; Noes, 284.839
|Division No. 99.]||AYES||[8.49 p.m.|
|Aitken, W. T.||Bennett, Dr. Reginald (Gosport)||Carson, Hon. E.|
|Allan, R. A. (Paddington, S.)||Bennett, William (Woodside)||Cary, Sir Robert|
|Alport, C. J. M.||Bevins, J. R. (Toxteth)||Channon, H.|
|Amory, Heathcoat (Tiverton)||Birch, Nigel||Clarke, Col. Ralph (East Grinstead)|
|Anstruther Gray, Major W. J.||Bishop, F. P.||Clarke, Brig. Terence (Portsmouth, W.)|
|Arbuthnot, John||Black, C. W.||Clyde, Rt. Hon. J. L.|
|Ashton, H. (Chelmsford)||Boothby, R. J. G.||Cole, Norman|
|Assheton, Rt. Hon. R. (Blackburn, W.)||Bossom, A. C.||Colegate, W. A.|
|Astor, Hon. J. J. (Plymouth, Sutton)||Boyd-Carpenter, J. A.||Conant, Maj R. J. E.|
|Astor, Hon. W. W. (Bucks, Wycombe)||Boyle, Sir Edward||Cooper, Sqn. Ldr. Albert|
|Baker, P. A. D.||Braine, B. R.||Cooper-Key, E. M.|
|Baldock, Lt.-Cmdr. J. M.||Braithwaite, Sir Albert (Harrow, W.)||Craddock, Beresford (Spelthorne)|
|Baldwin, A. E.||Braithwaite, Lt.-Cdr. G. (Bristol, N. W.)||Cranborne, Viscount|
|Banks, Col. C.||Bromley-Davenport, Lt.-Col. W. H.||Crookshank, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. F. C.|
|Barber, A. P. L.||Brooke, Henry (Hampstead)||Crosthwaite-Eyre, Col. O. E.|
|Barlow, Sir John||Brooman-White, R. C.||Crouch, R. F.|
|Baxter, A. B.||Browne, Jack (Govan)||Crowder, John E. (Finchley)|
|Beach, Maj. Hicks||Buchan-Hepburn, Rt. Hon. P. G. T.||Crowder, Petra (Ruislip—Northwood)|
|Beamish, Maj. Tufton||Bullard, D. G.||Cuthbert, W. N.|
|Bell, Philip (Bolton, E.)||Bullock, Capt. M.||Darling, Sir William (Edinburgh, S.)|
|Bell, Ronald (Bucks, S.)||Bullus, Wing-Commander E. E.||Davidson, Viscountess|
|Bennett, F. M. (Reading, N.)||Burden, F. F. A.||Deedes, W. F.|
|Bennett, Sir Peter (Edgbaslon)||Carr, Robert (Mitcham)||Digby, S. Wingfield|
|Dodds-Parker, A. D.||Johnson, Howard (Kemptown)||Profumo, J. D.|
|Donaldson, Cmdr. C. E. McA.||Jones, A. (Hall Green)||Raikes, H. V.|
|Donner, P. W.||Johnson-Hicks, Hon. L. W.||Rayner, Brig. R.|
|Doughty, C. J. A.||Keeling, Sir Edward||Redmayne, M.|
|Douglas-Hamilton, Lord Malcolm||Kerr, H. W. (Cambridge)||Remnant, Hon. P.|
|Drayson, G. B.||Lambert, Hon. G.||Renton, D. L. M.|
|Drewe, C.||Lambkin, Viscount||Roberts, Peter (Heeley)|
|Dugdale, Maj. Rt. Hn. Sir T. (Richmond)||Lancaster, Col. C. G.||Robertson, Sir David|
|Duncan, Capt. J. A. L.||Langford-Holt, J. A.||Robinson, Roland (Blackpool, S.)|
|Duthie, W. S.||Law, Rt. Hon. R. K.||Robson-Brown, W.|
|Eccles, Rt. Hon. D. M.||Legge-Bourke, Maj. E. A. H.||Rodgers, John (Sevenoaks)|
|Elliot, Rt. Hon. W. E.||Legh, P. R. (Petersfield)||Roper, Sir Harold|
|Erroll, F. J.||Lindsay, Martin||Ropner, Col. Sir Leonard|
|Fell, A.||Linstead, H. N.||Russell, R. S.|
|Finlay, Graeme||Lloyd, Maj. Guy (Renfrew, E.)||Ryder, Capt. R. E. D.|
|Fisher, Nigel||Lloyd, Rt. Hon. Selwyn (Wirral)||Salter, Rt. Hon. Sir Arthur|
|Fleetwood-Hesketh, R. F.||Lockwood, Lt.-Col. J. C.||Sandys, Rt. Hon. D.|
|Fletcher, Walter (Bury)||Low, A. R. W.||Savory, Prof. Sir Douglas|
|Fletcher-Cooke, C.||Lucas, Sir Jocelyn (Portsmouth, S.)||Schofield, Lt.-Col. W. (Rochdale)|
|Fort, R.||Lucas, P. B. (Brantford)||Scott, R. Donald|
|Fraser, Hon. Hugh (Stene)||Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh||Scott-Miller, Comdr. R.|
|Fraser, Sir Ian (Morecambe & Lonsdale)||McAdden, S. J.||Shepherd, William|
|Fyfe, Rt. Hon. Sir David Maxwell||McCallum, Major D.||Simon, J. E. S. (Middlesbrough, W.)|
|Gage, C. H.||McCorquodale, Rt. Hon. M. S.||Smiles, Lt.-Col. Sir Walter|
|Galbraith, Cmdr. T. D. (Pollok)||Macdonald, Sir Peter (I. of Wight)||Smithers, Peter (Winchester)|
|Galbraith, T. G. D. (Hillhead)||Mackeson, Brig. H. R.||Smithers, Sir Waldron (Orpington)|
|Gammans, L. D.||McKibbin, A. J.||Smyth, Brig. J. G. (Norwood)|
|Garner-Evans, E. H.||McKie, J. H. (Galloway)||Snadden, W. McN.|
|George, Rt. Hon. Maj. G. Lloyd||MacLeod, Iain (Enfield, W.)||Soames, Capt. C.|
|Glyn, Sir Ralph||MacLeod, John (Ross and Cromarty)||Spearman, A. C. M.|
|Godber, J. B.||Macmillan, Rt. Hon. Harold (Bromley)||Speir, R. M.|
|Gomme-Duncan, Col. A.||Macpherson, Maj. Niall (Dumfries)||Spence, H. R. (Aberdeenshire, W.)|
|Gough, C. F. H.||Maitland, Comdr. J. F. W. (Horncastle)||Spens, Sir Patrick (Kensington, S.)|
|Gower, H. R.||Maitland, Patrick (Lanark)||Stanley, Capt. Hon. Richard|
|Graham, Sir Fergus||Manningham-Buller, Sir R. E.||Stevens, G. P.|
|Gridley, Sir Arnold||Markham, Major S. F.||Steward, W. A. (Woolwich, W.)|
|Grimston, Hon. John (St. Albans)||Marlowe, A. A. H.||Stewart, Henderson (Fife, E.)|
|Grimston, Sir Robert (Westbury)||Marples, A. E.||Stoddart-Scott, Col. M.|
|Harden, J. R. E.||Marshall, Douglas (Bodmin)||Storey, S.|
|Hare, Hon. J. H.||Marshall, Sidney (Sutton)||Strauss, Henry (Norwich, S.)|
|Harris, Frederic (Croydon, N.)||Maude, Angus||Stuart, Rt. Hon. James (Moray)|
|Harris, Reader (Heston)||Maudling, R.||Studholme, H. G.|
|Harrison, Col. J. H. (Eye)||Maydon, Lt.-Cmdr. S. L. C.||Sutcliffe, H.|
|Harvey, Air Cdre A. V. (Macclesfield)||Medlicott, Brig. F.||Taylor, Charles (Eastbourne)|
|Harvey, Ian (Harrow, E.)||Mellor, Sir John||Taylor, William (Bradford, N.)|
|Harvie-Watt, Sir George||Molson, A. H. E.||Teeling, W.|
|Hay, John||Monckton, Rt. Hon. Sir Walter||Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. P. L. (Hereford)|
|Head, Rt. Hon. A. H.||Moore, Lt.-Col. Sir Thomas||Thomas, P. J. M. (Conway)|
|Heald, Sir Lionel||Morrison, John (Salisbury)||Thompson, Kenneth (Walton)|
|Heath, Edward||Mott-Radolyffe, C. E.||Thompson, Lt.-Cdr. (Croydon, W.)|
|Henderson, John (Cathcart)||Nabarro, G. D. N.||Thorneycroft, Rt. Hn. Peter (Monmouth)|
|Higgs, J. M. C.||Nicholls, Harmar||Thornton-Kemsley, Col. C. N.|
|Hill, Dr. Charles (Luton)||Nicholson, Godfrey (Farnham)||Turner, H. F. L.|
|Hill, Mrs. E. (Wythenshawe)||Nicolson, Nigel (Bournemouth, E.)||Turton, R. H.|
|Hinchingbrooke, Viscount||Nield, Basil (Chester)||Tweedsmuir, Lady|
|Hirst, Geoffrey||Noble, Cmdr. A. H. P.||Vane, W. M. F.|
|Holland-Martin, C. J.||Nugent, G. R. H.||Vaughan-Morgan, J. K.|
|Hollis, M. C.||Nutting, Anthony||Vosper, D. F.|
|Holmes, Sir Stanley (Harwich)||Oakshott, H. D.||Wakefield, Sir Wavell (Marylebone)|
|Hope, Lord John||Odey, G. W.||Walker-Smith, D. C.|
|Hopkinson, Henry||O'Neill, Rt. Hon. Sir H. (Antrim, N.)||Ward, Hon. George (Worcester)|
|Hornsby-Smith, Miss M. P.||Ormsby-Gore, Hon. W. D.||Ward, Miss I. (Tynemouth)|
|Horsbrugh, Rt. Hon. Florence||Orr, Capt. L. P. S.||Waterhouse, Capt. Rt. Hon. C.|
|Howard, Gerald (Cambridgeshire)||Orr-Ewing, Charles Ian (Hendon, N.)||Watkinson, H. A.|
|Howard, Greville (St. Ives)||On-Ewing, Ian L. (Weston-super-Mare)||Webbe, Sir H. (London & Westminster)|
|Hudson, Sir Austin (Lewisham, N.)||Osborne, C.||Wellwood, W.|
|Hudson, W. R. A. (Hull, N.)||Partridge, E.||White, Baker (Canterbury)|
|Hulbert, Wing Cmdr. N. J.||Peaks, Rt. Hon. O.||Williams, Rt. Hon. Charles (Torquay)|
|Hurd, A. R.||Perkins, W. R. D.||Williams, Gerald (Tonbridge)|
|Hutchinson, Sir Geoffrey (Ilford, N.)||Peto, Brig. C. H. M.||Williams, Sir Herbert (Croydon, E.)|
|Hutchison, Lt.-Com. Clark (E'b'rgh W.)||Peyton, J. W. W.||Williams, R. Dudley (Exeter)|
|Hutchison, James (Scotstoun)||Pickthorn, K. W. M.||Wills, G.|
|Hyde, Lt.-Col. H. M.||Pilkington, Capt. R. A.||Wilson, Geoffrey (Truro)|
|Hylton-Foster, H. B. H.||Pitman, I. J.||Wood, Hon. R.|
|Jenkins, R. C. D. (Dulwich)||Powell, J. Enoch||York, C.|
|Jennings, R.||Price, Henry (Lewisham, W.)|
|Johnson, Eric (Blackley)||Prior-Palmer, Brig. O. L.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES:|
|Mr. Butcher and Mr. Kaberry.|
|Acland, Sir Richard||Anderson, Alexander (Motherwell)||Bacon, Miss Alice|
|Adams, Richard||Anderson, Frank (Whitehaven)||Baird, J.|
|Albu, A. H.||Attlee, Rt. Hon. C. R.||Balfour, A.|
|Allen, Arthur (Bosworth)||Awbery, S. S.||Barnes, Rt. Hon. A. J.|
|Allen, Scholefield (Crewe)||Ayles, W. H.||Bartley, P.|
|Bellenger, Rt. Hon. F. J.||Hall, Rt. Hon. Glenvil (Colne Valley)||Orbach, M.|
|Bence, C. R.||Hall, John (Gateshead, W.)||Oswald, T.|
|Benn, Wedgwood||Hamilton, W. W.||Padley, W. E.|
|Benson, G.||Hannan, W.||Paget, R. T.|
|Beswick, F.||Hardy, E. A.||Paling, Rt. Hon. W. (Dearne Valley)|
|Bevan, Rt. Hon. A. (Ebbw Vale)||Hargreaves, A.||Paling, Will T. (Dewsbury)|
|Bing, G. H. C.||Harrison, J. (Nottingham, E.)||Pannell, Charles|
|Blackburn, F.||Hastings, S.||Pargiter, G. A.|
|Blenkinsop, A.||Hayman, F. H.||Parker, J.|
|Blyton, W. R.||Healey, Denis (Leeds, S. E.)||Paton, J.|
|Boardman, H.||Henderson, Rt. Hon. A. (Rowley Regis)||Pearson, A.|
|Bottomley, Rt. Hon. A. G.||Herbison, Miss M.||Peart, T. F.|
|Bowen, E. R.||Hewitson, Capt. M.||Plummer, Sir Leslie|
|Bowles, F. G.||Hobson, C. R.||Popplewell, E.|
|Braddock, Mrs. Elizabeth||Holman, P.||Porter, G.|
|Brockway, A. F.||Holt, A. F.||Price, Joseph T. (Westhoughton)|
|Brook, Dryden (Halifax)||Houghton, Douglas||Proctor, W. T.|
|Broughton, Dr. A. D. D.||Hoy, J. H.||Pryde, D. J.|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. George (Belper)||Hubbard, T. F.||Rankin, John|
|Brown, Thomas (Ince)||Hudson, James (Ealing, N.)||Reeves, J.|
|Burke, W. A.||Hughes, Gledwyn (Anglesey)||Reid, Thomas (Swindon)|
|Burton, Miss F. E.||Hughes, Emrys (S. Ayrshire)||Reid, William (Camlachie)|
|Butler, Herbert (Hackney, S.)||Hughes, Hector (Aberdeen, N.)||Rhodes, H.|
|Callaghan, L. J.||Hynd, H. (Accrington)||Richards, R.|
|Castle, Mrs. B. A.||Hynd, J. B. (Attercliffe)||Robens, Rt. Hon. A.|
|Champion, A. J.||Irvine, A. J. (Edge Hill)||Roberts, Albert (Normanton)|
|Chapman, W. D.||Irving, W. J. (Wood Green)||Roberts, Goronwy (Caernarvonshire)|
|Chetwynd, G. R.||Isaacs, Rt. Hon. G. A.||Rogers, George (Kensington, N.)|
|Clunie, J.||Janner, B.||Ross, William|
|Cocks, F. S.||Jay, Rt. Hon. D. P. T.||Royle, C.|
|Coldrick, W.||Jeger, George (Goole)||Schofield, S. (Barnsley)|
|Coltick, P. H.||Jeger, Dr. Santo (St. Pancras, S.)||Shackleton, E. A. A.|
|Cook, T. F.||Jenkins, R. H. (Stechford)||Shawcross, Rt. Hon. Sir Hartley|
|Corbel, Mrs. Freda||Johnson, James (Rugby)||Shinwell, Rt. Hon. E.|
|Cove, W. G.||Johnston, Douglas (Paisley)||Short, E. W.|
|Craddock, George (Bradford, S.)||Jones, David (Hartlepool)||Shurmer, P. L. E.|
|Crosland, C. A. R.||Jones, Jack (Rotherham)||Silverman, Julius (Erdington)|
|Crossman, R. H. S.||Keenan, W.||Silverman, Sydney (Nelson)|
|Cullen, Mrs. A.||Kenyon, C.||Simmons, C. J. (Brierley Hill)|
|Daines, P.||Key, Rt. Hon. C. W.||Slater, J.|
|Dalton, Rt. Hon. H.||King, Dr. H. M.||Smith, Ellis (Stoke, S.)|
|Darling, George (Hillsborough)||Kinley, J.||Smith, Norman (Nottingham, S.)|
|Davies, A. Edward (Stoke, N.)||Lee, Frederick (Newton)||Snow, J. W.|
|Davies, Ernest (Enfield, E.)||Lee, Miss Jennie (Cannock)||Sorensen, R. W.|
|Davies, Harold (Leek)||Lever, Harold (Cheatham)||Soskice, Rt. Hon. Sir Frank|
|Davies, Stephen (Merthyr)||Lever, Leslie (Ardwick)||Sparks, J. A.|
|de Freitas, Geoffrey||Lewis, Arthur||Steele, T.|
|Deer, G.||Lindgren, G. S.||Stewart, Michael (Fulham, E.)|
|Delargy, H. J.||Lipton, Lt-Col. M.||Stokes, Rt. Hon. R. R.|
|Dodds, N. N.||Logan, D. G.||Strachey, Rt. Hon. J.|
|Donnelly, D. L.||MacCall, J. E.||Strauss, Rt. Hon. George (Vauxhall)|
|Driberg, T. E. N.||McGhee, H. G.||Summerskill, Rt. Hon. E.|
|Dugdale, Rt. Hon. John (W. Bromwich)||McGovern, J.||Swingler, S. T.|
|Ede, Rt. Hon. J. C.||McInnes, J.||Sylvester, G. O.|
|Edelman, M.||McKay, John (Wallsend)||Taylor, Bernard (Mansfield)|
|Edwards, John (Brighouse)||McLeavy, F.||Taylor, John (West Lothian)|
|Edwards, Rt. Hon. Ness (Caerphilly)||MacMillan, M. K. (Western Isles)||Taylor, Rt. Hon. Robert (Morpeth)|
|Evans, Albert (Islington, S. W.)||McNeil, Rt. Hon. H.||Thomas, David (Aberdare)|
|Evans, Edward (Lowestoft)||MacPherson, Malcolm (Stirling)||Thomas, George (Cardiff)|
|Evans, Stanley (Wednesbury)||Mainwaring, W. H.||Thomas, Iorwerth (Rhondda, W.)|
|Ewart, R.||Mellalieu, E. L. (Brigg)||Thomas, Ivor Owen (Wrekin)|
|Fernyhough, E.||Mallalieu, J. P. W. (Huddersfield, E.)||Thorneycroft, Harry (Clayton)|
|Field, W. J.||Mann, Mrs. Jean||Thurtle, Ernest|
|Fienburgh, W.||Manuel, A. C.||Timmons, J.|
|Finch, H. J.||Marcwand, Rt. Hon. H. A.||Tomney, F.|
|Fletcher, Eric (Islington, E.)|
|Follick, M.||Mayhew, C. P.||Turner-Samuels, M.|
|Foot, M. M.||Mellish, R. J.||Ungoed-Thomas, Sir Lynn|
|Forman, J. C.||Messer, F.||Usborne, H. C.|
|Fraser, Thomas (Hamilton)||Mikardo, Ian||Viant, S. P.|
|Freeman, John (Watford)||Mitchison, G. R.||Wade, D. W.|
|Freeman, Peter (Newport)||Monslow, W.||Wallace, H. W.|
|Gaitskell, Rt. Hon. H. T. N.||Moody, A. S.||Watkins, T. E.|
|Gibson, C. W.||Morgan, Dr. H. B. W.||Webb, Rt. Hon. M. (Bradford, C.)|
|Glanville, James||Morley, R.||Weitzman, D.|
|Gooch, E. G.||Morris, Percy (Swansea, W.)||Wells, Percy (Faversham)|
|Gordon Walker, Rt. Hon. P. C.||Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Lewisham, S.)||Wells, William (Walsall)|
|Greenwood, Anthony (Rossendale)||Mort, D. L.||West, D. G.|
|Greenwood, Rt. Hon. Arthur (Wakefield)||Moyle, A.||Wheatley, Rt. Hon. John|
|Grenfell, Rt. Hon. D. R.||Mulley, F. W.||White, Mrs. Eirene (E. Flint)|
|Grey, C. F.||Murray, J. D.||White, Henry (Derbyshire, N. E.)|
|Griffiths, David (Rother Valley)||Nally, W.||Whiteley, Rt. Hon. W.|
|Griffiths, Rt. Hon. James (Lianally)||Neal, Harold (Bolsover)||Wigg, George|
|Griffiths, William (Exchange)||O'Brien, T.||Wilcock, Group Captain C. A. B.|
|Grimond, J.||Oldfield, W. H.||Wilkins, W. A.|
|Hale, Leslie (Oldham, W.)||Oliver, G. H.||Willey, Frederick (Sunderland, N.)|
|Willey, Octavius (Cleveland)||Williams, W. T. (Hammersmith, S.)||Wyatt, W. L.|
|Williams, David (Neath)||Wilson, Rt. Hon. Harold (Huyton)||Yates, V. F.|
|Williams, Rev. Llwelyn (Abertillery)||Winterbottom, Ian (Nottingham, C.)||Younger, Rt. Hon. K.|
|Williams, Ronald (Wigan)||Winterbottom, Richard (Brightside)|
|Williams, W. R. (Droylsden)||Woodburn, Rt. Hon. A.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES:|
|Mr. Bowden and Mr. Holmes|