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Typhoid (Research Worker's Death)

Volume 464: debated on Thursday 28 April 1949

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asked the Minister of Health if he will consider the payment of compensation to the parents of Edward Gill, of Stone Road, Stafford, who died from typhoid fever as a result of his work in a bacteriological laboratory in Stafford at the time of the typhoid outbreak in Shropshire.

While I deeply sympathise with the parents I am advised that I am not liable for such a payment. But a grant has been made ex gratia to Mr. Gill's father, which he has accepted in full and final settlement.

Is the Minister aware that the National Insurance officer has given a decision that the tragic death of Edward Gill resulted from his employment, and does he not think that the Medical Research Council, as the employers of Edward Gill, should have accepted some responsibility? Is he further aware that their more generous offer has only been made since this Question was raised?

The last part of my hon. Friend's supplementary question reveals the value of the House of Commons itself. In reply to the first part, I think it is quite clear that it is admitted that the boy contracted typhoid in the service of the Medical Research Council. That is the reason why, in consultation with the Treasury Solicitors, an ex gratia grant of £132 was made to the father.