§ Mr. Skinner
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he will now provide additional funds for the establishment of psychogeriatric wards in National Health Service hospitals; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Geoffrey Finsberg
The Government's policy is to give health authorities cash-limited sums of revenue and capital which they deploy in the light of national priorities and local circumstances. Current expenditure by health authorities in 1981–82 is planned to be 4 per cent. in real terms above the level for 1978–79, and further growth of 1.7 per cent. is planned for 1982–83. Both "Care in Action", our handbook of policies and priorities for the health and personal social services, and the White Paper "Growing Older" stressed the need for priority to be given to the provision in every district of enough suitable accommodation for the care of elderly people with psychiatric disorders.