HC Deb 08 December 1971 vol 827 cc333-4W
Mr. Bishop

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what are the figures relating to the need for qualified and student nurses in each category of the hospital services; if he will encourage hospital authorities to adjust their requirements in order that more qualified married women are encouraged to return to the service; and if he will undertake a study of further steps that could be taken to attract qualified married nurses into hospital service.

Mr. Alison

Meaningful estimates cannot be made because there is no generally accepted yardstick for determining nursing staff needs; but the numbers of both qualified and student nurses increased in the year March, 1970, to March, 1971.

Advice has been given to hospital authorities on the need for married women nurses and on the encouragement of part-time employment. The number of qualified women nurses in part-time employment in the Hospital Service is increasing and was over 40 per cent. of the total at 31st March, 1971. The Committee on Nursing is looking at this subject.