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New Clause—(Replacement In Cases Of Physical Disability, Of Surgical Experience By Additional Medical Experience)

Volume 477: debated on Friday 21 July 1950

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(1) Where on an application in that behalf a person satisfies the Council that by reason of lasting physical disability he will be or has been prevented from embarking on, or completing, any period of experience of the practice of surgery or midwifery required for the purposes of any of the foregoing provisions of this Act, the Council may if they think fit direct that the applicant may for those purposes count in lieu thereof experience of the practice of medicine (in addition to what would otherwise be required in his case by the said provisions) acquired in the like manner and for the like period or, as the case may be, for so much of that period as will have remained uncompleted.

(2) Where the Council give a direction under this section they shall give notice of the direction to the body granting the qualifying diploma to the person to whom the direction relates.

(3) Subsections (6) and (7) of section two of this Act shall apply for the purposes of this section as they apply for the purposes of that section.—[ Mr. Blenkinsop.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

1.5 p.m.

I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a Second time."

The object of this Clause is simply to meet a point raised by my hon. Friend the Member for Barking (Mr. Hastings) and to empower the General Medical Council, in cases of men suffering from physical disability, to substitute an equivalent period in medicine for the prescribed period of practice in surgery and midwifery.

I would like to thank the Minister for embodying my short Amendment in a much longer, and, I am quite sure, much more efficient, new Clause. I am quite convinced that, not only in literature and art, but also in medicine, some physically handicapped members of society have a very great contribution to make, and I want them to be not only provisionally registered, as they can be under this Clause, but also to have complete registration.

There is only one point I want to make. I would like to be assured by the Minister that, by this Clause, a physically handicapped person can, in place of surgery or midwifery, undertake duty in a health centre. If, for instance, he is only permitted to undertake duty in the medical department of a hospital, his experience will be limited, and I would like to be assured that Clause 3, which makes special provision as to employment in health centres, will apply to such a person, so that, after having taken one appointment as a house physician or medical intern, he may then, if there is an appointment available, be able, instead of midwifery or surgery, to take a second appointment in a health centre.

Question put, and agreed to.

Clause read a Second time, and added to the Bill.