Lieut.-Colonel C. LOWTHER
asked the Minister of Health if the approved societies have offered to undertake to pay the cost of medical benefit under the National Health Insurance Acts out of the surpluses accumulated during the past years; and, if this is regularised by Act of Parliament, will the medical men under contract with insurance committees come in any way under the control of the approved societies?
§ Sir A. MOND
I have nothing to add to the replies which I have already given to similar questions by the hon. and gallant Member for Dulwich (Sir F. Hall) yesterday, and the hon. and gallant Member for Torquay (Colonel Burn) to-day.
§ Mr. N. MACLEAN
asked the Minister of Health whether the addresses of insured persons are regarded by approved societies as confidential to the extent of sheltering any such from prosecution for deserting their wives and children, or other criminal offences; and, if so, whether steps will be taken to amend any Regulations imposing secrecy in this respect?
§ Sir A. MOND
There is no provision in the National Health Insurance Acts or the Regulations thereunder on the subject referred to by the hon. Member, but it has been laid down that information relating to insured persons which comes into possession of approved societies in the course of their administration of a State scheme of compulsory insurance should not, as a general rule, be used otherwise than for the purposes of such administration, except with the consent of the insured persons themselves, and societies have been advised accordingly. An exception to this general rule may, however, be made in special cases where the Department informs a society that it is necessary in the interests of justice in criminal proceedings that the information should be supplied.