Dental Services (Estimates Committee's Reports)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 12th July 1963.

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Photo of Mr Jon Rankin Mr Jon Rankin , Glasgow Govan 12:00 am, 12th July 1963

I must not discuss this in detail, except to say that there is no third location. There is only one location, if there is to be amalgamation, and that location would need to be Scotland.

Recommendation No. 11 has particular reference to Scotland. We are told this in the Government's observations: …the Secretary of State has made special arrangements with a dentist who has just commenced practice at a new health centre in the new town of Cumbernauld, under which the dentist is being remunerated by way of fees and is paying a full economic rent for the accommodation and services provided. That has the support of the Estimates Committee. It also has the strong support of the dental organisations. Is the right hon. Gentleman satisfied that the Secretary of State has sufficient powers to carry out this experiment fully? In other words, has the right hon. Gentleman powers in carrying out this experiment to enable him to treat the dentist as he can treat a doctor? The Minister knows that this practice is adopted regularly with doctors. The Secretary of State has full powers in the case of doctors. Will the Ministers satisfy themselves that they have to pursue no devious course in making this experiment in Cumbernauld? Can the Minister give me an idea of what the dentist is paying for his two-suite surgery in Cumbernauld? A figure of £600 a year has been suggested. Will the right hon. Gentleman either confirm that, or tell me the proper figure? If he wants to proceed further with this sort of experiment, the new town at Livingstone will provide him with further scope for this type of work which is highly commended by the Committee.

In Recommendation No. 15 we have a recommendation from the Estimates Committee for something which works very well in Scotland already. Most Scottish local authorities carry on an excellent consultant service in association with the hospital service.