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Sport for People with Limb Loss

Volume 577: debated on Thursday 13 March 2014

8. What support the Government are providing for PE and recreational sport for people with limb loss; and if she will make a statement. (903022)

Since this Government came to power, an extra 200,000 disabled people are playing sport on a very regular basis. Through Sport England, we are investing £170 million to improve sporting opportunities for those with disabilities, including limb loss.

Given the success of our Paralympians in both the summer and winter games, and the inspirational effect they have on young amputees, does the Minister share my concern that NHS England is supplying either a sports limb or a standard limb to young people, thereby restricting their capacity to compete or take part in recreational sport? Will she agree to talk urgently to her colleagues in the Department of Health about that, because it is having a serious impact?

I am certainly very happy to take up the matter that the hon. Lady raises. Increasing participation in sport for disabled people is a key priority for this Government and for Sport England. There is still an unacceptable gap between the numbers of disabled and non-disabled people doing sport, and we need to make sure that the gap closes.

Does the Minister agree that skiers such as Kelly Gallagher and our Paralympians are a fine example of what everyone can achieve in this country?

I certainly agree with my hon. Friend. Jade Etherington and Kelly Gallagher, and their guides, Caroline Powell and Charlotte Evans, are glowing examples of what can be achieved by sportswomen in this country.