§ Mr. McAllion
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services how many appeals against decisions relating to single payments for people on supplementary benefit are currently being dealt with by the Dundee, East and Dundee, West offices of his Department on the latest available figures; and how many were made up each year since 1979.
§ Mr. Portillo
At 10 November 1987 Dundee, East and Dundee, West local offices had respectively 25 and 45292W
regional health authorities and the joint consultants committee, deals specifically with the career structure for hospital doctors. As I said in my reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Bury, North (Mr. Burt) on 27 October at column 258 its aims are to improve the quality of patient care by a number of measures designed to correct the present imbalance in hospital medical staffing. One of these measures is to relate the number of doctors in the training grades more closely to expected career opportunities.
The steering group which drew up the "Plan for Action" fully recognised the importance of teaching and research, both in their own right and as an integral part of doctors' postgraduate training. In particular, it recognised the special need of academic medicine to be able to respond quickly to unforeseen academic developments. The mechanisms set out in the "Plan for Action" therefore make special provision for additional posts to be set up where exceptional circumstances indicate this, while ensuring that the total number of academic and research posts in the training grades is brought into line with future opportunities.