§ Mr. Wigley
asked the Secretary of State for Wales what steps have been taken to ensure that the number of qualified speech therapists employed by each of the area health authorities in Wales conforms with the standard set out in the report of the committee chaired by Sir Randolph Quirk; how many of those currently employed are bilingual in Welsh and English; and what were the corresponding figures for each year since 1979.
§ Mr. Mark Robinson
Following the publication of the Quirk report, a working party on speech therapy in Wales reported in December 1979. Since 1979 whole-time speech therapists employed by district health authorities in Wales increased from 65.6 to 117.6 at September 1985. This suggests that the standards recommended in the Quirk report will be attained well before the target date of 1992. Information on the current number of bilingual staff employed by health authorities is not held centrally.