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Health Service Staff

Volume 130: debated on Monday 21 March 1988

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To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will make a statement on staffing levels in the Health Service in Wales.

Operational and managerial responsibility for the determination of staffing levels rests with individual health authorities. Since the Government took office there has been an overall increase of 16 per cent. in front-line staff and of 11 per cent. overall.

Is the Secretary of State aware of the recent British Medical Association report which revealed that there was a 50 per cent. shortage of medical record staff in Wales, with the result that treatment is being delayed, and carried out less efficiently in some cases, and that there are great problems of marrying laboratory results to medical records?

I hope that the arrangements to be made for manpower surveillance over the whole of the Health Service will help to make sure that manpower resources are available where they are most needed.