§ Mr. Redmond
To ask the Secretary of State for Health how he proposes to ensure fair and open competition in the NHS and the NHS trusts for potential female applicants for senior management posts; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mrs. Virginia Bottomley
The NHS is committed to equal opportunities in employment. The Department launched an initiative in June 1991 to put women's employment issues on the main NHS managerial agenda. In order to take full advantage of the potential of women in the NHS, the NHS management executive has signed up as a campaign member of Opportunity 2000. Among the 205W key goals set is the need to ensure that more women are appointed at the most senior levels as firm evidence of the commitment to making best use of all staff. Detailed guidance on how these goals may be achieved, and the results monitored, is to be issued in due course.