§ 111. Mr. M. Stewart
asked the Secretary of State for War why the contents of a psychiatric report on Private Irene Rosser were publicly disclosed at the court-martial of Lieut.-Colonel Gleave; at what date this report had been made; and whether such disclosures are in conformity with normal practice.
§ 112. Mr. M. Stewart
asked the Secretary of State for War to what persons, and for what purposes, the contents of Army medical or psychiatric reports may be disclosed.
§ Mr. Head
The general practice of the War Office is not to disclose the contents of Army medical records, including psychiatric reports; they are regarded as a confidential class of document for which privilege is claimed as a class. The Department will, however, exceptionally waive the claim to privilege, if necessary, in the over-riding interests of justice, in serious criminal cases and is prepared, in such cases, to make the records available both to the prosecution and the defence.
Medical records of ex-Service personnel may also be disclosed, with their agreement in each case, to doctors to assist in treatment.
Certain parts of a military psychiatrist's special report on the accused, but not other medical records, may be made available in confidence to the prosecution and defence at a military court-martial, to assist them in the conduct of their cases; and portions relating to character may be produced to the court in mitigation of sentence if the accused is convicted.