HC Deb 12 March 1956 vol 550 cc8-9
19 and 20. Mrs. Slater

asked the Minister of Health (1) what consultations he has had with the hospital management committees covering north Staffordshire on the question of facilities for hospital treatment for pneumoconiosis patients;

(2) what consideration he has given to the reorganisation of the use of certain hospitals in north Staffordshire in order to facilitate the treatment of pneumoconiosis patients.

Mr. Turton

The regional hospital board advises me that adequate facilities for treatment are available without reorganisation. I have had no request from the hospital management committees for consultation.

Mrs. Slater

May I ask the Minister, now that the hospital management committee is again looking at this problem in the light of the very alarming figures of pneumoconiosis in north Staffordshire, whether the Minister, when he gets a request for consideration, will look at it in relation to pneumoconiosis and also other chest diseases?

Mr. Turton

There is a proper channel through which to start this, which is for the management committee to discuss the matter with the regional hospital board. I understand that, in fact, there has been no formal consultation between them, although the officers of the board are in constant touch with the officers of the committee about this matter.

Dr. Stross

Will the Minister say that his attitude will at least be favourable? When the regional board has considered the representations which are being made to it, and when he himself is made cognisant of them, as he will be on Friday this week, will the right hon. Gentleman give whatever assistance he can to ensure that these cases of chronic chest disease are being catered for?

Mr. Turton

My hon. Friend the Parliamentary Secretary said only last week that at present there are sixty-four beds vacant which were formerly occupied by people with pulmonary tuberculosis, and there has been no refusal of admission of patients to these beds. At the moment there is no evidence before me of this need.

Back to
Forward to