HC Deb 28 April 1948 vol 450 cc42-3W
28. Colonel Stoddart-Scott

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies if he is aware that Victoria Hospital, Bathurst, Gambia, which provides hospital service for 300 Europeans and 15,000 Africans cannot provide facilities for blood transfusions, has only one clinical thermometer and the solitary chemist in the Colony is unable to provide one and that the drug indent on the United Kingdom is two years in arrears; and what steps does he intend to take to overcome immediately this unnecessary and dangerous lack of medical equipment, drugs and dressings.

Mr. Mayhew

My right hon. Friend is informed that whole blood transfusions can be, and have been, provided at the Hospital, though this is done only when plasma or other transfusion would not suffice. No "blood bank" has been established in the Colony owing to local difficulties over collection and storage. Although the local chemist has at present no clinical thermometers in stock, twelve dozen are held in the Colony and 28 of these are on issue. It is not correct that the drug indent on the United Kingdom is two years in arrears. Certain items have occasionally been in arrears owing to supply and shipping delays, but the Governor reports that there is and has been no dangerous deficier.