§ 40. Dr. Stross
asked the Minister of Health the average charge made for pay beds attached to hospitals; and the average weekly cost of maintaining them.
§ Mr. Iain Macleod
I regret that this information is not available. Average figures would in any case be misleading, as Section 5 of the National Health Service Act, 1946, requires the charge at each hospital concerned to cover the whole cost of accommodation and services at that hospital.
§ Dr. Stross
Will the Minister look at the problem from the point of view of the number of beds which, in some hospitals, are kept vacant for the convenience of the consultant service, and if he finds 1620 that the number is up to 50 per cent., as I am informed, will he look at the matter again?
§ Mr. Macleod
I do not necessarily accept what the hon. Gentleman says, but we have called for a detailed report which will be available in January.