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Volume 476: debated on Monday 26 June 1950

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asked the Minister of Health if, in view of the serious consequences which attend the accidental introduction of wrongly-diagnosed cases of smallpox into general hospitals, he will consider issuing a text-book on the diagnosis of smallpox for the use of hospital doctors and also for medical students who are studying for the diploma of public health.

I do not think it is within my functions to publish medical textbooks, but I will have the objective underlying my hon. Friend's suggestion considered.

asked the Minister of Health whether he will make a statement on the wrong diagnosis of cases at Halifax and Sowerby Bridge which were sent to the Cottingham Hospital, Hull, as smallpox cases, and were subsequently found not to be that disease.

I am advised that the doctors who reported a diagnosis of suspected smallpox acted rightly and prudently: and there is no reason to be critical of their judgment in the fact that subsequent hospital tests did not confirm the diagnosis.