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Friday, 5 April 1946

To-day the Government, as stated in the House by Mr. Nordmeyer, is considering a revision of the present method of payment and when .it is seen how the cost of the medical benefits is rising year by year, the need for action is clear.

This is the story as told in Health Department reports:


The increased cost in three years is over 'a quarter of a million pounds. " Special arrangements", alone, cost £23,855 last year.

Last year the Health Department was not perturbed by the increase in the cost, judging hy the following passage from its report: - " The cost of the- general medical service ' shows a slight increase on that for the previous year. The shortage of civilian doctors, and the long, hours they are working in many cases, makes it unlikely that the cost will increase further under present conditions ".

This year the report dismissed the problem in one sentence: "General Medical Services: The costs are still rising, and will continue to do so as fresh medical practitioners enter service". In other words, because there are more doctors, to treat the same number of patients, more money will have to be paid, though there are fewer patients per doctor. It is curious reasoning, and evidently Mr. Nordmeyer thought so, from the tenor of his remarks In the House. -

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