§ 86 and 87. Mr. Edward Davies
asked the Minister of Health (1) what records his Department keeps of the number of patients awaiting entry to hospitals; and what steps are being taken to reduce the waiting time;
(2) whether he is satisfied that the greatest use is being made of hospital beds; and what steps are being taken to reduce the number of unoccupied beds.
§ Mr. Iain Macleod
The returns which are submitted annually by hospitals show that during 1951 the waiting list dropped by nearly 27,000 and the average daily number of occupied beds increased by over 4,000. A very small reduction in the average length of stay of patients or in the proportion of beds unoccupied would make a considerable difference to waiting lists and my Department is discussing with the regional hospital boards how improvements on these lines could best be achieved.