§ Mr. Kenneth Clarke
Management consultants are commissioned for work in the National Health Service both by health authorities and by our Department. No record of the work commissioned by health authorities is kept centrally and the information cannot be produced without disproportionate cost. Consultancy work commissioned by the Department covers both National Health Service and Departmental applications but separate figures are not kept. Central funding since 1979 was as follows:
£ 1979–80 411,026 1980–81 390,930 1981–82 731,276 1982–83 1,315,588 1983–84 3,622,887 1984–85 *7,600,000 * Estimated.
Proposed expenditure for 1985–86 is estimated at 13.8 million. Separate figures for work commissioned in the National Health Service by our Department cannot be produced without disproportionate cost.
The increase in expenditure in the last two to three years has been influenced substantially by the need to obtain expert technical assistance with the development of advanced on-line computer systems for social security operations.
§ Mr. Cohen
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what information he has regarding the incidence of management consultants employed by the National Health Service seeking to attract National Health Service employees away from the National Health Service and into employment with those consultants; and if he will make a statement.