HC Deb 08 February 1966 vol 724 cc184-5
14. Mr. Stratton Mills

asked the Minister of Overseas Development what consultations took place at the recent Commonwealth Medical Conference at Edinburgh concerning the creation of a Commonwealth Medical Service; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Oram

None, Sir. I am sending the hon. Member a copy of the report of the conference. He will see from the report that the proposal was not raised then.

Mr. Stratton Mills

When speaking in the House on 20th July last did not the hon. Member undertake to discuss this matter at the Commonwealth Medical Conference? Does not he agree that there is a continuing need, for as far ahead as we can see, for a long-term project of Commonwealth aid on the lines of a career service in Commonwealth medical aid?

Mr. Oram

Last July I said that the conference might prove a suitable forum for a discussion of what the hon. Gentleman had in mind, but I did not say that we would raise the subject because, as I indicated in my answer then, we did not really believe that this was a suitable initiative for us to take. If there is anything in the idea it would have been better for it to be raised by the Commonwealth countries which are the recipient nations—and they did not see fit so to do.