HC Deb 07 February 1962 vol 653 cc410-1
18. Commander Donaldson

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland why in Command Paper 1602, the Hospital Plan for Scotland, there is no mention of the Peel Hospital in Selkirkshire either in the major or minor works programmes; and if he is satisfied that this hospital, serving a large area, is adequate and up to the standards required in the hospital service.

Mr. Maclay

Minor works are being undertaken as necessary, and I believe the hospital is providing an adequate standard of service. Priority for major reconstructions is a matter, primarily, for the regional hospital board.

Commander Donaldson

Is my right hon. Friend aware that, whatever opinion the regional hospital board has reached, it is not the opinion of the chairman and members of the Border Area Hospital Board, nor indeed of the vast majority of my constituents and those who also live in Berwickshire, apart from Roxburgh, Selkirk and Peebles? Is he aware that this general hospital is in such an isolated position that staff are not keen to go there? While not denigrating in any way the excellence of the hospital staff, from surgeons to potato peelers, who all perform excellent work, I would point out that this position is a source of great anxiety to my constituents and those in an adjoining constituency. Can my right hon. Friend go further and give some hope of a properly situated hospital up to modern standards in the reasonably near future?

Mr. Maclay

I understand my 'hon. and gallant Friend's concern, for this is a very important matter, but he will appreciate that I am bound to have regard to the views of the regional hospital board in matters of this kind. I would mention that more than £230,000 have been spent on this hospital over the last ten years.