§ Dr. Stross
asked the Minister of Health whether he is yet able to make a statement about his discussions on the registrar grades.
§ Mr. Marquand
Yes. I am glad to say that my discussions with representatives of the medical profession have reached a point at which I am able to give the House some further information.
We have agreed that the normal period of training of a senior registrar should be increased from three years to four, and that in consequence of this and other factors considered during our discussions, the total training establishment of senior registrars in England and Wales should be 960 instead of the 600 suggested on a three-year training basis at the end of last year. We have also agreed broadly on the distribution of this total by specialties. I now propose to enter into discussions with regional hospital boards and boards of governors about their shares of the totals in the light of the proposals which they have submitted to me.
As regards registrars, whose appointments do not normally last more than two years, I propose to give boards, in the course of my discussion with them, some further guidance about the place of 226W this grade in the hospital service. I have decided for the time being, with the profession's agreement, to leave boards to fix their own establishments of registrars in the light of that guidance, subject, however, to review when the reports of the teams now examining the medical staffing of hospitals have been received and considered.