HC Deb 14 December 1970 vol 808 cc924-5
9. Mr. Ifor Davies

asked the Secretary of State for Wales what is his policy on the recommendations of the Royal Commission on Medical Education, Command Paper No. 3569, column 390, dealing with medical education in Wales, in the light of the recent implementation of the recommendations for England.

Mr. Gibson-Watt

Decisions on the provision of facilities for medical education are taken by the Secretary of State for Education and Science on the advice of the University Grants Committee and in consultation with the Health Ministers, and I would refer the hon. Member to the reply given him by my right hon. Friend on 19th November.—[Vol. 806, c. 455.]

Mr. Davies

Is the Minister aware that the recent announcement of a new medical school at Leicester—I congratulate Leicester—brings the total number of medical schools in England to 12? In addition, there are five in Scotland. That compares with only one in Wales. Is he further aware that if it is decided to implement the recommendation of the Royal Commission that a new school should be built in Wales in 1975 and located at Swansea, the decision is now extremely urgent having regard to the essential long-term planning?

Mr. Gibson-Watt

I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman for raising this matter. I know his proper interest in this. The Todd Report, which recommended Leicester and Swansea, was fully covered in the answer which my right hon. Friend gave to him the other day. Consultations are taking place between the various Health Ministers on this matter.

Mr. Alan Williams

Will the hon. Gentleman recognise that there is a desperate need in Wales for further medical educational facilities? May we have a firm assurance that he will use the full weight of his office to support the application in respect of Swansea.

Mr. Gibson-Watt

I have already made it clear that on both sides of the House this is considered to be an important matter. I assure the hon. Gentleman that we shall not be backward in pursuing the interests of Wales.