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Hospital Beds

Volume 114: debated on Tuesday 7 April 1987

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will make it his policy to restore the number of beds available in National Health Service hospitals to 1979 levels.

No. Our main concern is people, and services arid treatments provided for them, not beds. Improvements in the cost effective use of resources have

enabled treatments to increase since 1979, despite bed reductions. We now (1985 figures) care for well over 6 million in-patient cases—almost 1 million more than in 1979; nearly 374½ million, that is 3⅓ million more, outpatient attendances and nearly 1 million, that is over ⅓million more, day cases.