HC Deb 23 February 1965 vol 707 cc217-8
22. Mr. Chapman

asked the Minister of Overseas Development what action she has taken to give effect to the recommendation of the Commonwealth Prime Ministers' meeting last year that a Commonwealth Medical Conference should be held.

Mrs. Castle

All Commonwealth Governments have agreed to this proposal and it is planned to hold the conference in Edinburgh from 4th to 13th October this year. The purpose of the conference will be to consider the existing methods and schemes of mutual co-operation between Commonwealth countries in the field of medicine and to make recommendations regarding the ways in which this co-operation can be strengthened and extended.

Mr. Chapman

Is my right hon. Friend aware of the satisfaction which will be shared by both sides of the House with this announcement, which is further evidence of the energy in her Ministry? Will unofficial medical bodies be able to take part in this most important Commonwealth conference?

Mrs. Castle

My hon. Friend is quite right. This is further evidence of the importance which we attach to Commonwealth co-operation in all these things. I think that we will have a very valuable conference. The unofficial bodies will be able to take Dart and we hope that the medical profession in Britain will be represented.

Mr. Stratton Mills

Having regard to the right hon. Lady's many duties, has she experienced the need for a Minister of State to assist her?

Mrs. Castle

The thoroughness with which we are now supervising the management of aid and the planning of aid means that we could do with additional help.

Mr. R. Carr

Is the right hon. Lady aware of how much pleasure it gives us on this side of the House to see her implementing our plans, including even that for the venue of the conference at Edinburgh?

Mrs. Castle

I am sorry that some of these plans which the right hon. Gentleman keeps mentioning were not brought into operation under his régime.