§ Mr. Dalyell
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is her estimate of the need of central laboratories for clinical geneticists.
§ Mr. Sackville
Most clinical genetics laboratories are based in regional genetics centres. Laboratory services in respect of complex or rare disorders are provided by a national centre, such as the National Haemoglobinopathy676W reference laboratory. This laboratory is the national reference centre for carrier diagnosis and prenatal diagnosis of complex haemoglobinopathies, notably the thalassaemias and sickle cell disease. The pattern of provision will depend to a large extent on the pace of developments.