HC Deb 01 July 1968 vol 767 cc1065-6
4. Dr. Summerskill

asked the Secretary of State for Employment and Productivity what steps he is taking to encourage more people who have worked, or are working, in contact with the chemical naphthylamine to be screened for bladder cancer.

The Under-Secretary of State for Employment and Productivity (Mr. E. Fernyhough)

The Carcinogenic Substances Regulations, 1967, require that people in factories whose work exposes them to alpha- or beta-naphthylamine must be screened for bladder cancer so long as they work in the factory, and be advised by the issue of a cautionary card when they leave the factory to continue to be screened.

The manufacture and use of beta-naphthylamine is in fact prohibited by the Regulations although there is provision for exemptions for medical and scientific research and testing; no exemptions have been granted. The Department is trying, with the help of the industries, concerned., to trace workers formerly at high risk from these bladder carcinogens, and not covered by the Regulations, to encourage them to be screened.

Dr. Summerskill

Would my hon. Friend bear in mind that there are several thousand people who worked in industrial rubber processes twenty years ago? How many of those have responded to the Minister's appeal?

Mr. Fernyhough

So far, we have contacted about 43,000, but, unfortunately, only 2,500 have made themselves available for screening.