HC Deb 07 March 1962 vol 655 cc402-3
44. Mr. Morris

asked the Secretary of State for War what progress is being made in remedying the shortage of doctors and other medical personnel in the British Army of the Rhine.

Mr. Profumo

The powers which I am seeking under the Army Reserve Bill will enable me to retain National Service medical officers and other ranks to meet the immediate shortage. In addition, eight civilian doctors have recently been engaged to serve in B.A.O.R.

Mr. Morris

Will more doctors be retained under the provision of the Army Reserve Bill than other services?

Mr. Profumo

I gave the number of doctors that we shall need when I spoke in debate. The hon. Gentleman will find the information in the OFFICIAL REPORT of 31st January, column 1132.

I think that it is something like 36 doctors in all.

Mr. Bellenger

Is it not the case that there is a serious shortage of medical officers in units, amounting to about 50 per cent., and does he think that the Army Reserve Bill will meet that shortage? Does he not need a much longer term policy?

Mr. Profumo

This raises a much wider question than the one on the Order Paper to which I was addressing myself. It may be that we may have a chance of discussing this matter, in more general terms, when we come to debate the Army Estimates.

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