Mr. F. HALL (Dulwich)
asked the Secretary to the Treasury if, in the case of the county of London, panel doctors have been paid in respect of medical benefit under the National Insurance Act at the rate of Is. 6d. per insured person for the second quarter of the present year, while they were paid at the rate of is. 9d. for the first quarter; if, further, no payment has been made in regard to persons added to the doctors' lists in the second quarter; if all payments due to medical practitioners for the first half-year have now been made as regards London; and, if so, if he will give the total amounts paid to panel doctors for the first and second quarters, respectively, and the total numbers of insured accepted persons for the same periods in respect of which such sums were paid?
§ Mr. MASTERMAN
The hon. Member is mistaken in supposing that a payment of a previously ascertainable amount is due at the end of each quarter to each doctor on the panel. As I have frequently pointed out, the precise amount actually due to any particular doctor can only be finally determined at the end of the year. The regulations, however, provide that the Insurance Committee shall make payments in advance at the end of each quarter of such amounts as may be agreed for this purpose, and London doctors have accordingly received advanced payments at the rate of 1s. 9d. per insured person on their list for the first quarter, and 1s. 6d. for the second quarter. Payments were made on:—
2515W To facilitate this latter payment on the last day of the quarter and to avoid delay, the amount paid was based on the figures for the first quarter. A further payment will be made on 23rd August, based on the figures for the second quarter, and any balance found to be payable will be added thereto.
s. d. 10th March … … … 0 9 22nd April … … … 1 0 10th June … … … 0 9 15th July … … … 0 9
§ Mr. BUTCHER
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, in view of the fact that a sum of 7s. per insured person per annum is paid to doctors on the panel for medical treatment, exclusive of drugs and medicine, he will state the reason why a sum of only 4s. per insured person per annum is allowed to friendly societies' medical associations for providing medical treatment, including drugs and medicines?
§ Mr. MASTERMAN
The hon. Member has been misinformed. Where the expenditure of an approved institution in respect of their insured members upon medical treatment (including the provision of medicines and appliances) and all reasonable establishment charges amounts to 9s. per head, the amount of the contribution to be made to the institution by the insurance committee will be a sum equal to 9s. per insured member of the institution.