HC Deb 23 February 1972 vol 831 cc1279-80
43. Mr. Gourlay

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland how much additional expenditure, capital and current, he intends to authorise for the South-East Regional Hospital Board, for the financial year 1972–73; and whether this will take into account an accelerated provision of additional geriatric and psycho-geriatric beds in Fife.

Mr. Monro

In terms of the White Paper on Public Expenditure, Cmnd. 4829 of November, 1971, my right hon. Friend expects to make an additional £11 million at 1971 prices available to the National Health Service in Scotland compared with 1971–72, but I cannot give particulars of the allocations which he intends to authorise for each regional hospital board until the 1972–73 estimates are approved by Parliament.

Although each board is responsible for determining its priorities, I have made known to them the importance which I attach to the improvement of hospital facilities for the old and mentally disordered.

Mr. Gourlay

Is the Minister aware that in Fife there are only 10 such beds per 1,000 of the population over the age of 65 compared with 15 beds per 1,000 in other areas of Scotland? Therefore can he say that the building of the geriatric hospitals in Kirkcaldy and Glenrothes will be brought forward to the 1972–73 period?

Mr. Monro

I cannot give any assurance for the 1972–73 period, but I will bear in mind the points which the hon. Gentleman made. I appreciate, too, that in his area of Fife, at Kirkcaldy, provision is required.

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