§ 12. Mr. Marten
asked the Minister of Health if he will initiate a research project to discover why only about one quarter of drivers eligible for invalid tricycles actually apply for them.
§ 82. Mr. Ednyfed Hudson Davies
asked the Minister of Health whether he is aware that the majority of disabled persons entitled to invalid tricycles do not apply for them; whether he is satisfied with the adequacy of the machines; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Marten
Is it not rather curious that the Ministry should not know how many people are entitled to them but do not have them? Is the hon. Gentleman aware that three-quarters of the people entitled do not apply? Will he look at this again and do something about it?
§ Mr. Snow
I do not know that three-quarters of the people entitled do not apply. That sounds like conjecture. If the hon. Gentleman has any evidence, I shall be glad to know about it. Eligibility depends, naturally, on medical examination of the applicant. We have no reason to suppose that these vehicles are not suitable for the many and varied types of disablement with which we have to cope.
§ Mr. Barnett
Is it true that the Department does not buy a slightly better vehicle at a similar price in order to keep down demand?
§ Mr. Snow
All vehicles, whether disabled persons' vehicles or ordinary cars, are capable of improvement. That is self-evident. As to the lack of evidence of people who might apply and who are entitled, in fact many people do not want to draw attention to their disabilities by applying for vehicles. We are anxious to help on three-wheeled vehicles where we can.
§ Sir J. Langford-Holt
The hon. Gentleman has said that, in his view, the design is satisfactory. Is he implying by that that a new design has come out recently, because the vast majority of designs available today are quite disgraceful?