§ Mr. Carter-Jones
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services when oxygen concentrators were first brought to the attention of his Department in the context of domiciliary oxygen therapy; by whom; what is the relative cost vis-a-vis supply of oxygen in cylinders; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Kenneth Clarke
The concentrator first came to the Department's notice in October 1969 when an appraisal of the Rimer-Birlec machine by Dr. J. E. Cotes was published in theBritish Medical Journal. At that time the machine was not sufficiently developed for domiciliary use. After further development and trials the general manager of Rimer-Birlec Ltd. wrote to the then Secretary of State for Social Services in January 1975 drawing attention to his company's domiciliary concentrator.
So far as the relative costs are concerned I refer the hon. Member to my reply to the hon. Member for Leeds, West (Mr. Meadowcroft) on 26 March, at column 61.