HC Deb 21 February 1977 vol 926 cc427-8W
38. Mr. Higgins

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will give directions so that when the Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration and the Health Service Commissioner for England recommend that an individual should be

1973 1974 1975 1976
Total 167,149 163,117 140,521 127,904
National Health Service 55,637 55,859 51,825 50,046
Approved places managed by registered charities 24,873 32,791 30,480 77,858*
Other approved places 86,639 74,467 58,216
* The analysis of this figure is available only for the first three quarters of the year and is:
Approved places managed by registered charities 22,376
Other approved places 36,676

I will write to the hon. Member as soon as the analysis of the final quarter's figures is available.

Mr. Biggs-Davison

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what propor- made an ex gratia payment following an investigation into a specific failure of the National Health Service, such a payment shall be made; and if he will give such a direction in the case of a constituent of the hon. Member for Worthing, details of which have been sent to his Department.

Mr. Ennals

I expect health authorities to treat reports by the Health Service Commissioner very seriously and to consider his findings and any recommendations he makes with the utmost care. In the particular case to which the hon. Member has drawn my attention it appears from the information available to me that the health authority concerned has given full and careful consideration to the Commissioner's report. It would be inconsistent with the Commissioner's advisory rôle and would derogate seriously from the management responsibilities on health authorities for me to direct that health authorities should automatically follow the recommendations of the Commissioner. I am not prepared, therefore, to give directions as proposed in the hon. Member's Question.

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