HC Deb 26 April 1966 vol 727 cc532-3
Q2. Dr. David Kerr

asked the Prime Minister whether he has received the latest report of the Review Body on Doctors' and Dentists' Remuneration; and if he will make a statement.

The Prime Minister

Yes, Sir, and it is being urgently studied.

Dr. Kerr

Will my right hon. Friend not end the uncertainty about whether these recommendations might be referred to the Prices and Incomes Board? Is he aware that such a step would prejudice the confidence which the Minister of Health has built up so splendidly among doctors in recent times? We look forward to an early statement.

The Prime Minister

I am sure that confidence is in no way in jeopardy, but a report of this degree of importance requires careful study. It is being studied urgently.

Miss Pike

Will the Prime Minister clear up two important points? As the doctors have been led to understand that the Government would accept this report, will the right hon. Gentleman confirm that the Government will honour that undertaking? Secondly, will the right hon. Gentleman confirm that he will not refer this matter to the Prices and Incomes Board?

The Prime Minister

Every assurance that has been given by my right hon. Friend the Minister of Health will be fully honoured so far as the implementation of this report is concerned. With regard to the second part of the hon. Lady's supplementary question, I would ask her to wait until we have had time fully to study the report.

Mr. Lubbock

Can the Prime Minister say roughly when he expects to make a statement to the House on the report? Is he aware that the doctors are entitled to an increase above 3½ per cent. under the Prices and Incomes White Paper, paragraph 15(2)?

The Prime Minister

All these considerations will no doubt have been taken into account by the Review Body, and they will be taken into account by the Government. We are, as I have said, considering the report urgently. We shall make a statement in the very near future, but I cannot give an exact date today.

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