§ 8. Mr. Spearing
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what adjustments he plans to make in the basis of the capitation formula for funding district health authorities. 
§ Mr. Spearing
Does the Minister agree that, even with the York refinements, the present formula is unsatisfactory, as shown by the fact that, until recently, a psychiatric consultant in Newham was dealing with a case load that was double the national average? Does the Minister agree that the 12 per cent. that is allocated to psychiatric care is unrealistic and that the 24 per cent. allocated to community care is inadequate? Should not whatever cake that is provided by the Treasury be divided equitably and be seen to have been so?
§ Mr. Horam
I entirely accept the hon. Gentleman's point, but we are refining the formula continually. On his point about psychiatric care, we are developing the index for community health services. It may not quite be ready for the next allocation, but none the less work is being done on it, which, I am sure, will benefit his area.
§ Dame Elaine Kellett-Bowman
Does my hon. Friend agree that the Prime Minister's efforts to persuade public bodies and others to use the funding with which they are provided to pay the bills of those who supply the NHS will be welcomed by those suppliers? Does my hon. Friend recall that, in 1975, under a Labour Government, when inflation was running at 27 per cent., there was no inducement to pay bills promptly, and hospital treasurers referred to 31 March as the longest day in the year, because they did not close their books on 31 March, and did not pay their bills until the end of April?
§ Mr. Horam
I entirely agree with my hon. Friend. I certainly agree that the Prime Minister's initiative yesterday to publish a list of shame of Departments and 775 the way in which they dealt with small companies is appropriate. I hope that the Department of Health will not come at the bottom of that list.