§ Mr. Hal Miller
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether, under the National Health Service, finance is allocated to districts on the basis of hospital beds rather than population; and if he will assess the effect of any such practice on the provision of health facilities in adjoining districts of the West Midlands Region.
§ Dr. Owen
There is no standard formula for the allocation of revenue518W resources to health districts, which is a matter for area health authorities. We have, however, asked authorities in England to make allocations for 1976–77, as far as is consistent with practical considerations, in accordance with nationally applicable principles, including the use of weighted population figures, adjusted to take account of patients who cross boundaries for in-patient treatment, and caseloads as the main determinants. In future years I hope it will be possible to use more sensitive criteria which will lead to greater equality in provision throughout the country.