HC Deb 29 November 1971 vol 827 cc40-2W
Dr. Tom Stuttaford

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he will make a further statement about his timetable for unifying the administration of the National Health Service in England.

Sir K. Joseph

As already announced, unification will take effect in April, 1974, when local government is reorganised. In preparation for this I am continuing my consultations with interested bodies, and progress is being made with the various studies that are in hand. A White Paper will be published in about the middle of 1972, and in advance of it I shall be making announcements about particular matters such as the future boundaries of the health authorities and the arrangements to safeguard the interests of those working in the various branches of the National Health Service.

Captain W. Elliot

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he will make a statement on his proposals to set up a Staff Commission for the purpose of handling staff redeployment problems which may arise in connection with the reorganisation of the National Health Service.

Sir K. Joseph

As I said in the House on 1st July, I intend to appoint a National Health Service Staff Commission in preparation for the reorganisation of the Service. It will be responsible for advising on the procedures to be used for filling particularly the more senior posts in the new bodies and on measures to safeguard the interests of staff. The Commission cannot be set up in its statutory form until the necessary legislation has been passed but I intend to appoint an Advisory Committee to undertake preparatory work pending the appointment of the statutory Commission. I am consulting the interests concerned about this and shall carefully consider their comments.—[Vol. 820, c. 609.]