HC Deb 24 November 1938 vol 341 c1961W
Mr. David Adams

asked the Minister of Health whether, in view of the fact that less than 10 per cent. of the 12,000,000 insured persons in Great Britain who are entitled to dental benefit avail themselves of that service, and in view also of the additional cost thrown upon general health services through resulting lower standards of health, he will take steps to graft on to the health insurance system a scheme of statutory dental benefit under which dental treatment would be as freely available as is medical benefit?

Mr. Elliot

The provision of dental benefit as a statutory benefit available to all insured persons would require an increase in the weekly rates of contribution at present paid by insured persons and their employers and the proposal could only be considered, when the time is opportune, in relation to demands for other major extensions of the National Health Insurance and Contributory Pensions Schemes. In the meantime dental benefit must remain an additional benefit and as such available only to members of those approved societies which devote part of their surplus funds to its provision.