HC Deb 28 February 1955 vol 537 cc1704-5
13. Mr. Wade

asked the Minister of Health why, in view of the independent medical report from a leading specialist, the mental deficiency order under which Kathleen Bradley, St. Margaret's Hospital, Great Barr, Birmingham, has for many years been detained, though at present allowed out on full licence, has not been discharged.

Mr. Iain Macleod

I understand that this case was recently considered by the board of control, who decided that the patient was still in need of the protection afforded by the order.

Mr. Wade

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that this unfortunate woman has been detained more than twenty-one years and there does appear to be evidence at least to suggest that she should never have been detained? Is that to be reviewed? At the same time, may I take the opportunity of asking if the Minister is quite satisfied that, pending the report of the Royal Commission, everything possible is being done to ensure that there are not individual cases of injustice or detention without just cause?

Mr. Macleod

The individual case is due for review before 31st March by the Board on the reports of the visiting justices. It is for the visiting justices, if they so wish, to hear evidence or any representations from the hon. Member or anyone else who would like to make them. On the general point, of course, I cannot give a categorical assurance. All I can say is that, to the best of my belief, that is so. I would be most anxious to investigate any case brought to my notice.