HC Deb 26 October 1972 vol 843 cc429-30W
Mr. Alfred Morris

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is his estimate of the number of people suffering from Friedreich's Ataxia; what research work his Department has undertaken or assisted into the causes of this disorder; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Alison

The total number of cases of Friedreich's Ataxia in the country at any one time is not known, but the number of admissions to hospital each year is estimated to be less than 100.

The small number of cases makes research difficult and no specific projects concerned solely with this rare nervous disease are supported by my Department.

1968 1969 1970 1971
Insurance Benefits (National Insurance Act 1965) 1,538 1,773 2,128 2,769
Supplementary Benefit (Ministry of Social Security Act 1966) 2,051 2,601 3,258 4,244
Totals 3,589 4,374 5,386 7,013

My Department is aware of the research into the disease which is supported by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Education and Science through the Medical Research Council.

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