Skip to main content

Health Service Doctors (Seconding)

Volume 524: debated on Wednesday 3 March 1954

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.


asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what arrangements there are for seconding doctors from the National Health Service to the service of Colonial Governments; and how many are at present seconded to Nigeria and the Gold Coast, respectively.

Hospital authorities have power to second members of their medical staffs in suitable circumstances to overseas and other posts. In addition, National Health Service hospital doctors may take up employment in the Colonial Medical Service for periods up to six years, with continuing participation in National Health Service superannuation. The salaries and general conditions of service of doctors so employed are similar to those for doctors on the permanent establishment. On reversion to employment in this country, a gratuity is payable. One doctor is serving in Nigeria and three doctors in the Gold Coast under these latter arrangements.

Would my hon. and learned Friend bear in mind that in Northern Nigeria there is only one doctor for every 64,000 people, and would he discuss with the Minister of Health what steps could be taken to make seconding better known and more popular?

Yes, Sir. My hon. Friend will appreciate that the trouble is partly due to the recent creation of the posts and partly to reluctance to accept a new idea.