§ Mr. Ashley
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services, pursuant to his reply of 9 July to the right hon. Member for Stoke-on-Trent, South, if he intends to have any consultations on the scheme known as record linkage; and if he will estimate the cost of a pilot study of such a scheme.
§ Mr. Patrick Jenkin
It is estimated that a pilot study of a record linkage scheme in an area with a population of 500,000 would cost approximately £500,000 per annum. The question of possible consultations will be considered in the light of the decision whether to proceed further with a pilot scheme.