The CIPFA information relates to 1984 and 1985 and to a very limited number of indicators. Performance indicator information for 1985 shows that the district performed well on throughput and turnover after standardisation for its complex case mix, and the district is broadly in the range of costs of other teaching districts. But the indicators and trends suggest areas for inquiry, and I welcome the fact that the West Midlands regional health authority and Central Birmingham health authority are together monitoring the data on services and costs in the district to ensure that they are being provided as efficiently and effectively as possible.
My right hon. Friend will be aware of the constant consultant clamour that has come from the district health authority, which has done so much to undermine the public confidence in the National Health Service. The figures he has given show that the health authority comes 19th out of 23 district health authorities on throughput in beds, and 21st out of 23 on patient attendance, yet it receives more money per head of population than any other district health authority in the west midlands.
I agree with my hon. Friend that those questions must be considered in relation to the health authority, so I very much welcome the work of the regional chairman in discussing these matters with the district.