§ Madam Speaker
Order. I am sure that the Minister cannot hear what the hon. Lady is saying. [Interruption.] Order. Let us hear what she is saying.
§ Mrs. Fyfe
Is the Minister aware that a recent study of in-patients leaving hospitals shows them to be less well-nourished than when they entered hospital? Will he discuss the matter with his ministerial colleagues in Scotland to ensure that patients do not rely on their visitors to bring them Chinese takeaways as well as the traditional bunches of grapes?
§ Mr. Bowis
I think that I caught most of that question. The answer is that, yes, I am aware of the report—although of course I am not responsible for hospitals in Scotland, 99 which are a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland. The report appeared in the British Medical Journal. The hon. Lady will also have seen that Dr. Pennington made it very clear that the main problem is loss of appetite associated with illness. Enteral and parenteral feeding is certainly necessary in some cases, but in most cases hospitals need to have good nutritional policy. That is why our task force is issuing guidance and a handbook and is training health professionals. I am sure that the next time the hon. Lady visits a hospital she will see the benefits.