Skip to main content

Plasma

Volume 984: debated on Tuesday 6 May 1980

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

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many litres of plasma were processed at the Elstree laboratory in each year since 1972.

The information is as follows:

1972:15,000 litres (part year only)
1973:60,710 "
1974:82,667 "
1975:85,050 "
1976:116,582 "
1977:148,703 "
1978:156,325 "
1979:155,742 "

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) how many litres of plasma were imported in each year since 1972; and at what cost;(2) how much plasma it is estimated will be imported during the current year; and at what cost.

As far as I am aware, no human blood plasma is imported into the United Kingdom, but several commercial companies import processed blood products which are purchased by health authorities. No reliable estimate is available of expenditure on these products by the NHS in 1979–80, but it is thought to have been in the region of £5 million to £6 million. Expenditure in 1980–81 is expected to be of the same order. I regret that I cannot estimate expenditure for earlier years.

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what studies have been undertaken into the possibility of modernising the Elstree laboratory to enable it to meet the demand for plasma products; how much this would cost; and what the likely effect would be on the level of imports.

Proposals are being prepared for the development of this laboratory in both the short and the long term. These will include estimates of cost and of import savings. I regret that no such estimates are available at present.

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what discussions he has had concerning the possibility of handing over the plasma section of the National Blood Transfusion Service to private industry at home and abroad; and if he will make a statement.

There is no question of industrial participation in plasma collection, but I am considering the possibility of participation in plasma fractionation. There would be no question of arrangements outside this country.