HC Deb 19 January 1977 vol 924 cc253-4W
Mrs. Wise

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether the inquiry into the Prescription Pricing Authority has been completed; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Moyle

Yes. The report of the inquiry is being published today and copies are being placed in the Library. I should like to acknowledge the speed and thoroughness with which Mr. R. I. Tricker, the Director of the Oxford Centre for Management Studies, conducted the inquiry. His report should help the Authority in its efforts to quicken the settlement of pharmacists' and doctors' accounts for the dispensing of NHS prescriptions and to achieve a better flow of information on drug usage and prescribing practice.

The report, which pays tribute to the Authority's staff in their exacting task of examining hundreds of millions of prescription forms each year, contains a number of detailed short-term recommendations for improving the efficiency of the organisation, including the introduction of a system of pricing prescriptions by sampling. As a long-term solution, it recommends computerisation of the work.

As the next step I shall be inviting all interested parties to let me have their views on the recommendations before final decisions are taken on them.

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