§ Mrs. Virginia Bottomley
The report is published today, and copies are available in the Library. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Education and I are sending copies of the third (interim) report to all interested parties under cover of a message welcoming and endorsing the report's conclusions and recommendations. The steering group brings together all the main bodies involved in the organisation and delivery of undergraduate teaching and research, and we are grateful to the representatives of these bodies who have served on the group. This phase of the group's work has involved consideration of the arrangements for undergraduate medical and dental education and research against the background of the introduction of the national health service reforms, and we welcome the group's continuing emphasis on the need for close and effective co-operation between the universities, the NHS and research interests in order to achieve the common purpose of maintaining and improving standards of education and research. We have endorsed the report's recommendation that there should be a successor group to take forward the report's recommendations, which include extending the remit to enable it to consider additional issues which are likely to have an impact on undergraduate medical and dental education and research in the near future.