HC Deb 10 December 1962 vol 669 cc19-20
38. Sir Richard Pilkington

asked the Minister of Health what has been the expansion of the hospital services during the last ten years.

Mr. Powell

I would refer my hon. Friend to pages 146 and 147 of my last Annual Report, and to the Progress Reports on hospital building.

Sir Richard Pilkington

Would my right hon. Friend say whether it is a fact that the expansion of these services over the country as a whole in recent years has been unprecedented in peace time, and if it is a fact will he take steps to make it more widely known?

Mr. Powell

Yes, I am anxious to take every opportunity of bringing to public knowledge the rapid rate at which the hospital service is expanding and being modernised. Already, since the inception of the service, the equivalent of 65 new great hospitals of 600 beds have been built.

Dr. Stross

But would the right hon. Gentleman take note of the type of information which comes to some of us, certainly to me from Stoke-on-Trent, that despite—perhaps because of—this expansion the finances of the hospital management committees today are such that they cannot properly maintain the old parts of their services such as painting, fabric, and certain alterations which ought to be done and must be done? Will the right hon. Gentleman do what he can to see they have sufficient finance far this?

Mr. Powell

The increase in terms of value in the revenue allocations of hospital authorities takes account of the new capital equipment and buildings which are coming into use.