HC Deb 11 December 1967 vol 756 c24
22. Mr. Biffen

asked the Minister of Health what proposals he has for a maternity unit at the Whitchurch General Hospital, in view of the widespread local support for such a unit.

Mr. Snow

None, Sir. Provision for Whitchurch is made in the new maternity unit at Copthorne Hospital, Shrewsbury.

Mr. Biffen

Does not the hon. Gentleman recall that earlier in Question Time today he confessed that hospital conditions in the Shrewsbury district were inadequate? Is he aware that over 6,000 people have petitioned for such a hospital and that the Answer he has given will encourage the belief that hospital planners, whether in Birmingham or London, show a woeful indifference to local needs popularly expressed?

Mr. Snow

I believe there is a great deal to be done in educating the public into a general understanding that we cannot with justification prevent patients from getting the best technical treatment. This technical treatment can be provided only within the concept of the district general hospital. That is why I have given the reply I gave. It is quite wrong to say the regional board is insensitive to local demand. It is a questiton not only of highly sophisticated equipment but also of the provision of trained staff.

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