§ Mr. Spearing
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the approximate median cost per delivery, with or without local training facilities, for each delivery in maternity hospitals and maternity units in England and Wales, the equivalent cost in modern units with good support facilities, and the cost per delivery at the Plaistow and Forest Gate Maternity Hospitals, respectively, over a comparable period.
§ Dr. Owen
The cost of treating particular illnesses or conditions is not separately identified in National Health Service cost accounts, except where treatment is in a hospital providing predominantly for one speciality. Thus, whilst costs of maternity services, which may be given in many types of hospitals—e.g., acute—cannot be separated from the cost of other specialties, certain costs in hospitals specifically classified as maternity are available from costing returns submitted to the Department. These do not show median costs, but from them an average cost per in-patient case can be calculated.
In maternity hospitals in England during the financial year ended 31st March 1975 this cost was £157.47 for an average length of stay per case of 6.9 days. The comparable case costs at Plaistow and Forest Gate maternity hospitals were £180.69—average stay 6.8 days—and £325.73—average stay 10.3 days—respectively.
The costs returns give only statistical and financial data and do not enable distinctions to be made on the basis of quality of support facilities.