§ 37. Mrs. Castle
asked the Minister of Health why he has refused to supply Mr. T. Welsh, of Blackburn, with an invalid motor tricycle, despite the fact that he has had his right leg amputated in the upper third and suffers from gunshot wounds in the left thigh.
§ Mrs. Castle
Is the hon. Lady aware that that is an absolutely outrageous reply? Does she not agree that this man has told her, as he has told me, that he cannot walk as much as 400 yards without severe pain? Is she aware that he is employed at a Remploy factory and that he has no means of getting there in wintry weather on icy roads except by 953 foot and that he is in severe pain when he arrives at work? If this is not adequate ground for giving this mechanical assistance, can the hon. Lady think of any better?
§ Miss Pitt
I certainly do not agree with the right hon. Lady's criticism. When she wrote to me about this man last December, I arranged for him to be medically re-examined. He has had one leg amputated, but the result of the examination showed that, although his sound leg tends to drag, he can walk quite well.
§ Dr. Summerskill
Can the hon. Lady recall other cases similar to this being drawn to her attention? Whilst I am sure that hon. Members on both sides of the House recognise that these injuries are not necessarily those laid down in the regulations, nevertheless these men who were injured during the war have now reached middle age and the increasing strain on a middle-aged man who has had one leg amputated and the other injured is very great. It cannot be assessed in surgical or medical terms, but nevertheless it is there. May I ask the hon. Lady to ask her right hon. and learned Friend whether he will reconsider this and similar cases which can only be very few in number?
§ Miss Pitt
The question of transport facilities for the war-disabled pensioner is still under consideration, as I have told the House before, but in particular instances—and I take the point made flat they are now increasing in age—cases can be re-examined, as was done in this case with which I have just been dealing.