§ Mr. Coaker
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what meetings he has had with health authority managers regarding the use of NHS personnel in a military emergency; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Spellar
I recently met with my noble Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health, Lord Hunt, and the Director of the NHS Executive South East Region. Our discussions covered a range of issues of common interest. Officials in my Department and at the Department of Health are working closely together on the implications for the NHS of deploying substantial numbers of medical Reservists on military operations and possible requirements for the NHS to treat significant numbers of casualties returned to the UK in the event of a major overseas conflict. Current Defence planning does not include the call up of civilians other than members of the Volunteer Reserves Forces or former Regular personnel with a Reserve liability.