§ Rev. Martin Smyth
To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many general practitioners in Great Britain bought added years (old style) pension rights in 1975; how many of those general practitioners were under 43 years old in 1972; what were the figures for general practitioners aged under 44 years in steps of £500 based on average updated earnings to October 1972; and how many of the general practitioners are still paying for the added years.
§ Mr. Dorrell
In England and Wales, approximately 30,000 general medical and dental practitioners took advantage of the NHS pension schemes (old style) added years provisions. The majority of these have since retired with benefits from the scheme.
Further information is not readily available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost. Information about parallel schemes in Northern Ireland and Scotland is a matter for my right hon. Friends the Secretaries of State for Northern Ireland and for Scotland.
§ Mr. Blunkett
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to issue guidance to general practitioner fundholders on how they should respond to inquiries from hon. Members representing their area on matters of policy; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Dorrell
There are no plans to do so. If an hon. Member has a concern about the activities of a GP fundholder I would suggest he raises it with the relevant family health services authority.