§ Mr. Hannam
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services in how many districts health care planning teams for, respectively, the disabled, the mentally ill and the mentally handicapped have been established.
§ Mr. Moyle
The numbers of planning teams of various kinds in health districts varies from time to time, depending on local decisions; on the resources available; and on priorities for planning. In October 1975, 80 teams were concerned with services for the mentally ill, 47 for the mentally handicapped and 5 for the disabled, though other teams, such as those for rehabilitation, would also be interested in the needs of the disabled. The circular HC(76)18 issued by my Department in March 1976, requires health authorities to review and, if necessary, revise existing arrangements for planning in health districts to ensure that planning teams are established for those services judged to carry the highest priority, among them mental handicap and mental illness.
My hon. Friend the Minister with responsibility for the Disabled is aware of the relatively small number of teams covering the interests of disabled people. He intends to draw this to the attention of health and local authorities in his forthcoming discussion paper on ideas generated at the Seminar on Disablement held at Sunningdale last year.