HC Deb 14 June 1988 vol 135 cc158-9W
66. Mr. Knapman

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what plans he has to give the public more information about family doctor services.

Mr. Newton

The White Paper "Promoting Better Health" (Cm. 249), published in November 1987, sets out a number of measures for improving information to the public about family doctor services. For example, the Government intend to require family practitioner committees both to provide medical lists which contain more comprehensive information about practices in their areas, and to make the lists more widely available locally.

The wider provision by family doctors of practice leaflets, which contain information for patients about the doctors, the organisation of the practice and the services available, will also be encouraged. In addition, the Government wish to see a relaxation of the current restrictions applied by the General Medical Council on the extent to which family doctors may advertise factual information about their practices. They therefore welcome the Office of Fair Trading's recent reference to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission of the current restrictions on family doctors' advertising.