§ Mr. Corbett
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether she will seek to amend the National Health Service Reorganisation Act 1973 to require area health authorities to make provision for dental inspection and treatment of pupils in attendance at non-maintained schools on the same basis as that for maintained schools.
§ Dr. Owen
Area health authorities at present have the power, but not the duty, to make arrangements with the proprietors of non-maintained schools for the provision of medical as well as dental inspection or treatment of pupils. In considering applications by proprietors of independent schools, health authorities must have regard to the staff and other resources available to them. All too frequently they are already short of staff in their school dental services. I do not think, therefore, that it would be reasonable to require all area health authorities to make provision.