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Mental Cases (Institutional Treatment)

Volume 148: debated on Wednesday 9 November 1921

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asked the Minister of Pensions the names of the institutions approved by the Lunacy Board of Control to which uncertifiable ex-service men are being sent; by what authority the Lunacy Board, whose function re insanity is limited to the care of the certified, is placed in a position undefined by law in regard to its approval of homes for cases not serious enough to be placed under detention; and whether, in view of the anxiety of the nation that ex-service men, if uncertifiable, should not be placed to their detriment in semi-lunatic institutions under the tutelage of the Lunacy Board, will he take steps to secure that all uncertifiable cases suffering from war injury should have the advantage of hospital treatment absolutely free from detention and from stigma, instead of being forced, as at present, into institutions under lunacy by the threat of the loss of half their allowance?

I would remind my hon. Friend that questions affecting the Board of Control should be addressed to my right hon. Friend the Minister of Health. I understand, however, that there are no such institutions as suggested in the first part of the question. The second part of the question does not, therefore, arise. As regards the third part of the question, I have already taken steps to secure that all uncertifiable ex- service officers and men whose condition is due to war service shall have the advantage of hospital treatment under my control, and entirely independent of lunacy administration. Provision has been made in the Ministry Neurasthenic Hospitals for the accommodation and treatment by trained medical officers of the cases to which my hon. Friend refers.