HC Deb 31 January 1962 vol 652 cc1082-3
25. Mr. J. Hill

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland how many ambulances are operating in Midlothian; and whether he is satisfied that this number is sufficient to cover the needs of that area.

Mr. Galbraith

Six ambulances operate from depots in Midlothian, and the area is also served by ambulances from Edinburgh; the number of journeys per ambulance suggests that the existing arrangements provide adequate cover.

Mr. Hill

Is the Minister aware that in the south-east part of the constituency of Midlothian some patients are carried by private contractors, that there are great complaints about the delay, and that when ambulances do come to collect patients they operate like a public service collecting three or four patients in the same ambulance, though they do not necessarily go to the same hospital, thus causing great pain and discomfort? Will he consider the importance of having more ambulances for this area?

Mr. Galbraith

The average number of journeys is two journeys per ambulance per day, and that does not seem excessive. If the hon. Gentleman has any particular case in mind and would care to let me know about it, I should be delighted to examine it.

Mr. Hoy

The Minister will be aware that in the last few days I have sent him details of a case in which an ambulance was very late in arriving after an accident had taken place, and was then manned only by the driver. Will he look at this problem when examining the case raised by my hon. Friend?