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Volume 130: debated on Wednesday 30 March 1988

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To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland when he expects to respond to the British Medical Association, Royal College of General Practitioners and Scottish General Medical Services committees' call for general practitioners to be able to give out free needles and condoms; and if he will make a statement.

The suggestions made by the three bodies are contained in a joint policy statement setting out a wide range of proposals on AIDS, HIV infection and drug misuse. I welcome the interest of these

GradesEstablishmentFunded establishmentStaff or post at 29 February 1988
Chief nursing officer111
Deputy chief nursing officer111
Assistant chief nursing officer111
Senior nurses (including one senior tutor)141414
Charge nurses-ward sisters (including one clinical teacher)565456
Staff nurses5355312
Senior enrolled nurses373737
Enrolled nurses146146139
Nursing assistants212119

bodies in a matter which is of major concern to the Government, and we shall be arranging early discussions with their representatives to consider the details of their proposals.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will make a statement on the operation and future of the syringe exchange centres in Scotland.

I refer the hon. Member to my reply given to my hon. Friend the Member for Eastwood (Mr. Stewart) on Tuesday 29 March 1988.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what steps he is taking to prevent the spread of HIV 2 in Scotland.

HIV 2 infection in the United Kingdom has been monitored for some time. The indications are that the disease is extremely rare in the United Kingdom: the first positive among several thousand tests was found only some two weeks ago. Blood samples from high risk groups will continue to be monitored and we shall take account of the situation in Europe, where HIV 2 infection is thought to be more prevalent, to assess whether further measures are needed.