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Volume 888: debated on Monday 10 March 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what is the average waiting time for vasectomy operations under the NHS in England and Wales.

:From the information available from most areas the average waiting times for vasectomies are shown to be six weeks for operations on priority medical grounds and 20 weeks for operations on other grounds. In a few areas the period of waiting varies markedly from these figures.

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) in how many area health authorities vasectomy operations are available only to private patients, or by appointment to private consultant surgeons;(2) if she will name the area health authorities, which have set up clinics for the provision of vasectomies within the National Health Service, and those which have not.

:Health authorities were advised in a circular issued in May 1974 that their immediate task was to take over and maintain the vasectomy service provided by local health authorities. Information on those area health authorities which arrange for vasectomies to be performed will be available from returns now being received for the first nine months of the family planning service introduced on 1st April 1974. I will write to my hon. Friend when these returns have been analysed.