§ MR. JASPER TULLY (Leitrim, S.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, whether his attention has been directed to the numerous complaints regarding the ineffective and primitive arrangements for night nursing in union hospitals in Ireland; and, whether he can state what steps have been taken by the Local Government Board to have a better system enforced in the different unions in Ireland?
§ SIR THOMAS LEA (Londonderry, S.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether, in view of the admitted defects in the management of Irish workhouses, he will grant a commission of inquiry into the Poor Law System of Ireland?
§ MR. GERALD BALFOUR
My attention has been directed to the defective arrangements for night nursing in many workhouse hospitals in Ireland. The Local Government Board have addressed a circular to each Board of Guardians throughout Ireland calling their special attention to the alleged insufficiency of the nursing, and requesting that the medical officer of each workhouse might be called upon to furnish a Report on this most important matter. The Board also stated that they considered that the whole subject might with advantage be referred to the Visiting Committee of each union for a Report, after consultation with the medical officer as to any changes or improvements that might be carried out in the hospital. The Guardians 552 have acted on the suggestion of the Local Government Board, who are giving special attention to the subject. The entire matter is engaging my careful consideration, and I would hope that the defects referred to, and which have in every case been ascertained and recorded, will be remedied, or very largely removed, by means of friendly action and advice on the part of the Local Government Board, without having recourse to the appointment of a Commission and the enforcement of its recommendations by possibly more drastic measures. In any event, no decision in the matter can be arrived at until it is seen what steps the Guardians may take in response to the recent circular of the Local Government Board calling their serious attention to the matter.