§ 68. Mr. Anthony Greenwood
asked the Minister of Health whether he will make a statement on the progress achieved in setting up a central purchasing organisation for hospital requirements.
§ Mr. Bevan
Central contracts are placed for X-ray equipment and films, laboratory and blood transfusion apparatus, spectacles, rubber goods and certain scarce and costly drugs. Hearing aids are purchased under contract by the Post Office, surgical and orthopaedic appliances by the Ministry of Pensions, and occupational therapy equipment and invalid tricycles by the Ministry of Works. I intend, as soon as practicable, to extend these arrangements to cleaning materials and hardware., bedding, cotton and woollen textiles, drugs and dressings and other common-user goods. Net savings cannot be precisely calculated but are not less than £2½ to £3 million.