HC Deb 08 February 1956 vol 548 cc1645-6
24. Mr. Awbery

asked the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation what methods are adopted to send medical advice to and from ships at sea where no doctor is carried; if he is satisfied that this is adequate; and what steps are being taken to give officers such training that they will be better able to explain the symptoms of a case when drafting a call for medical aid or receiving such advice.

Mr. Watkinson

Ships obtain medical advice by radio through shore stations and from doctors aboard other ships. These arrangements are well established and work adequately. AH United Kingdom ships and all doctors concerned have copies of the 'Ship Captain's Medical Guide," so that symptoms and advice can be discussed by reference to it. In addition, all United Kingdom certificated officers must hold a first-aid certificate.

Mr. Awbery

Is the Minister aware that it is highly desirable that on reasonably sized ships there should be someone who can send out and receive medical messages? Will he encourage all officers to pass the examination, and see that they get recompensed for the trouble taken in passing the examination?

Mr. Watkinson

That is a very important point and I should like to look at it, although I am advised that the present arrangements are not unsatisfactory.

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