§ Helen Jones
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to ensure that sufficient police surgeons are available in each area of the country to carry out intimate body searches on those suspected of carrying illegal drugs. 
§ Mr. Michael
[holding answer 29 January 1998]: It is for chief constables to decide how many police surgeons are needed to carry out the range of services required of police surgeons in the police area and then to appoint them. Under Code of Practice C issued under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1994, intimate body searches of those suspected of carrying illegal drugs may be carried out either by a registered medical practitioner or by a registered nurse.