§ The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Health (Sir Barnett Stross)
Population changes are taken into account in planning the hospital services for any area.
§ Mr. Dance
Is the hon. Gentleman aware that the problems of providing 880 maternity facilities exist now in Redditch? Is he aware that we already have a rapidly increasing population there? Will not the hon. Gentleman do something about this problem now in advance of the establishment of the new town?
§ Sir B. Stross
It is true that there are no maternity beds in Smallwood Hospital, Redditch, which is a general practitioner hospital of 32 beds. Specialist services, including maternity, for the population in the Redditch area are now provided at the Bromsgrove General Hospital, where there are 411 beds, including 45 maternity beds. The hospital is 10 miles from Redditch where the population is now 35,000 and will increase to 70,000 in 15 years.