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Friday, 26 July 1946

Mr MORGAN (REID, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Will the Minister for Repatriation have an immediate impartial inquiry made into the allegations in yesterday's Sydney Sun concerning the case of ex-Private Neale Edwards, of Lidcombe, who is' a disabled returned soldier inmate of the Yaralla Hospital? The Sun carried the heading "Digger

Won't Go Back To Yaralla Nightmare ", under which it . reported - " Serving in the Middle East, he contracted encephalomyelitis - inflammation of the spinal cord". In an interview with the reporter, he said that he had been so affected by electric shock treatment that he was a nervous wreck. Will the Minister inquire whether it is true, as alleged, that army doctors told him that he would lose his pension unless he returned to the hospital for more electric shock treatment? Will the Minister take steps to ensure that he shall not be deprived of his pension because of his refusal to submit to treatment which is apparently both futile and harmful in his case? Will he have him transferred to the Prince of Wales Repatriation Hospital, Randwick, for massage and treatment as requested? Will the Minister indicate whether progress is being made in the provision of proper hostels and sanatoriums for nerve cases? Will he also have trained manipulators, osteopaths, and chiropractors attached to the Prince of Wales Hospital and take steps to ensure that patients shall not against their will be used by medical experimenters as human " guinea pigs ".

Mr FROST - I have not seen the report, but I shall have the matter investigated.

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