HL Deb 08 March 2001 vol 623 cc45-6WA
The Countess of Mar

asked Her Majesty's Government:

For what purpose more than 250 Gulf veterans were referred by the Medical Assessment Programme to the clinic at the Hammersmith Hospital; and for what purpose the blood samples supplied by the veterans were used. [HL979]

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean

The current physicians who have been at the Gulf Veterans' Medical Assessment Programme since February and September 1998 have no recollection of any Gulf veterans being referred to the Hammersmith Hospital. To find if any such referrals took place would require a trawl through over 3,000 medical records held at the GVMAP. This could only be done at disproportionate cost. If the noble Countess would care to write to me with more details of her concerns I will investigate further.

Blood samples taken from Gulf veterans as part of the battery of routine clinical tests at St Thomas' Hospital (not by the GVMAP physicians) are used for the following tests: full blood count, blood biochemistry, glucose level, virology and immunology. The results of these tests are sent back to the GVMAP physicians, who report them to the patient's general practitioner.