asked the Minister of Health the maximum of patients a doctor may have on his panel; and to what extent he may increase this number by having an assistant?
The maximum number of patients for whom an insurance practitioner working single handed tray accept responsibility is 3,000. The Insurance and Panel Committees have power to fix a lower number as the limit for their particular area or for any portion of it. The extent to which the number may be increased in the case of a practitioner who employs a permanent assistant is a matter within the discretion of the local committees. The information available indicates that in general the employment of an assistant is held to justify the increase of the number by approximately 50 per cent.
Does the right hon. Gentleman consider that a doctor can deal with 3,000 patients?
What are the restrictions on a veterinary surgeon when he is dealing with cattle?
I do not think cattle have health insurance yet!
Is it not the fact that the numbers given are not patients, but only potential patients—that there is only a small number of actual patients?
That is so.