§ Mr. Peter Walker
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what measures are being taken to reduce the regional differences in waiting time for the arthro-plastics operation for arthritis.
§ Mr. Ennals
The Resource Allocation Working Party has identified regional differences in levels of funding for hospital services and it is my objective to minimise these. Resources apart, regional differences in waiting times for arthroplasty operations depend largely upon local priorities and practices, and my Department seeks to encourage such practices as will increase the numbers of patients treated.