Committee (5th Day)

Part of Health and Social Care Bill – in the House of Lords at 3:30 pm on 14th November 2011.

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Photo of Lord Cormack Lord Cormack Conservative 3:30 pm, 14th November 2011

My Lords, I thought that the noble Lord, Lord Patel of Bradford, moved an absolutely model probing amendment, and the complexity of the issue was very well illustrated by the brief contribution of the noble Baroness, Lady Barker. I came not to take part in this debate but to listen, but I just want to say, as someone who represented a constituency in Parliament for 40 years, that I saw the enormously valuable work that so many charities did, particularly hospices and organisations that provide support, such as the Macmillan nurses and, as the noble Lord, Lord Noon, mentioned, the Marie Curie nurses, who do a very similar job.

As we have this seminal opportunity to get it right, I hope that my noble friend the Minister, for whom I have enormous respect and regard, will be able to respond to this exemplary probing amendment in his customary exemplary way by indicating that the Government are indeed taking these matters exceptionally seriously. I hope that the Government are anxious to ensure, when this Bill emerges from Committee and goes to Report, that the Minister will have some remedies to meet the extremely important and pertinent points raised by the noble Lord, Lord Patel, when he moved this amendment and others who have supported him in this brief but, I think, important debate.