HC Deb 24 March 1960 vol 620 cc668-9
43. Dr. Stross

asked the Prime Minister whether, in view of the importance of the National Health Service to the nation and the admiration and interest shown in it by many other countries, he will add the Minister of Health to those who serve in the Cabinet.

The Prime Minister

It is not possible to include in the Cabinet all Ministers in charge of Departments. But it should not be inferred from this that the Government underrate the importance of the matters for which Ministers outside the Cabinet are responsible.

Dr. Stross

Would not the Prime Minister agree that it is difficult for observers abroad to appreciate the attitude and the answer he has just given? Would the right hon. Gentleman bear in mind, too, that the medical profession itself feels somewhat aggrieved on this matter, and could he give it some further attention?

The Prime Minister

Well, Sir, I agree, but, of course, the composition of a Cabinet has always rested within the discretion of the Prime Minister of the day. Adjustments are made from time to time, but there is the fact that to some extent it is not desirable that the Cabinet should be too big, partly from the point of view of discussion, and partly because of the character of the room in which we meet.