Teitl Casgliad: Carmarthen weekly reporter
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Carmarthenshire Insurance Committee
Carmarthenshire Insurance Committee. The Carmarthenshire Insurance Committee met at the Carmarthen Guildhall on Saturday under the presidency of Mr D. Evans, Manor- daf. SANATORIUM BENEFIT. The Finance and General Purposes Com- mittee reported with regard to sanatorium benefit that the Welsh National Memorial Association had been paid for 1915 at the rate of £29.5 14s 7d per quarter, which amount re- presented what was available for 1915 at 80 per cent .of the 1913 grant. No instruction as to the 1916 payment had been received from the Welsh Insurance Commissioners, and it was therefore decided that for the quarter ending March, 1916, the Association be Pftid euqal to the payment for each quarter of lyl5. CHEMISTS AND THEIR. BILLS. It was also stated in the report that the question of advances to chemists had been considered by the Drugs and Appliances Com- mittee which recomencied an advance to the chemists monthly of 80 per cent, of the costs of each chemist at the rate of 8d per prescrip- tion. The Finance and General Purposes Com- mittee, however, were informed that the chem- ists did not wish advances made to them, and in vitew of this and the fact that it would in- volve a lot of clerical labour, the Finance Committee decided that no advance be made. It was also deeded that the chemists be paid 85 per cent. of the amounts submitted in respect of the last quarter. The same committee recommended that Mr George, of London, be paid 15s per 1,000 tor pricing prescriptions for the last quarter in- stead of 10s as before agreed to. Two clerks had made applications for increases of falary, and Victor Emns was given an increase from 15s to 17s 6d a week, and Lleweivn Harries from 10s to 12 6d.—The report was adopted. THE SALARIES OF THE CLERKS. Mr Ben Griffiths. Llanely, suggested that a scale of salari-es should be drawn up for the clerks. "REP. MIST." The Drugs and Appliances Committee re- ported that the Pharmaceutical Committee had called attention to the fact that pertain doctors, especially in Llanelly, continued to write "Rep. Mist." (Repeat the Mixture) on their prescriptions, and this involved much labour on chemists. The Insurance Committee were asked to take steps, in consultation with the Panel Committee, to discontinue the prac- tice of entering "repeat the mixture" on pre- scriptions. DOUBLE PAY FOR SUNDAY. scriptions. DOUBLE PAY FOR SUNDAY. The Drugs Committee also reported the receipt of a letter from the Pharmaceutical Committee stating that they had decided to apply for double lees for all prescriptions dis- pensed on Sundays and Bank Holidays, and after 8 p.m. on other days, provided doctors niarke them as urgent. The Drugs Com- mittee had resolved that 50 per cent, be added to the dispensing fees in such cases. TWO CARDS STAMPED. The Clerk reported the receipt of a letter from Mr Albert Da vies, Carmarthen, applying for a refund of excess contributions paid. He had stamped two insurance cards for the same quarter. The Insurance Commissioners were willing to refund the amount due, provided the Committee gave approval. The Clerk added that the men stamped two cards because he lost one. The Chairman And he found it afterwards? vhe Clerk: Yes. The Committee decided to give the neces- sary approval. DOCTORS TO PRESCRIBE. The Clerk read correspondence -regarding two choniists at LI-andov(,ry-Mr Rochards, who had gone off the ponel, and Mr Morgan, who was iH and unable to dispense. The local doctors had written to ask what should be done under the circumstances, and he (the Clerk) had replied that the committee would agree to the suggestion that they should prescribe themselves and receive the fee usually allowed to doctors in districts whre there were no chemists. DOCTORS AND ARMY SERVICE. A letter dated February 20th was read from Dr Donald Stewart, Ammanford, stating that in the event of his accepting a. commission in the R.A.M.C., and if he were called up for service under the Miiitary Service Act. would it be necessary for the insurance committee to lodge an appeal for his exemption, and would it be possible to make arrangements by which his panel patients would receive satisfactory attendance. The Clerk said that to save time he had re- plied to the effect that if the doctor entered on military service it would be necessary to make arrangements, and failing by him by the committee for the proper treatment of his panel patients. With regard to appealing to the tribunal for his exemption, he told the doctor that he did not think it was the inten- tion of the committee to do that, so long as there was the possibility of providing treat- ment. The doctor seemed satisfied with that. Mr J. H. Evans, Carmarthen, said if all the doctors were called up, the committee would be in a very sad predicament. He did think the committee should lav down a rule they were,iiot to appeal. Mr H. E. B. Richards, Carmarthen: Is it not for the doctors to appeal? The Tribunal will consider all the foots. Mr Ben Griffiths, Llanelly, said it would strengthen the appeals if the committee sup- ported them. The committee ought to appeal for the doctors seeing that they were respon- sible for insured persons receiving proper attendance. Mr^Riohards: If a doctor has to go, we will make arrangements for another doctor to look after his panel patients. We are not expected to make appeals. Mr Ben Griffiths said the committee could not make arrangements if there were no other doctors in the country. Therefore the com- mittee had to see first of all whether there were any doctors to take the place of those who joined the Colours. If there were not, the committee should certainly appeal. Mr D. Morgan, Llandilo, stated that in one tribunal a reply was given that a doctor was more important at the front than at home. Mr J. H. Evans said he did not agree with Mr Richards when he said that the committee had no locus standi. The committee employed the doctors and as employers they had a right to appeal. The work of national insurance was of national interest and on that ground the committee could appeal. He agnfxl that where arrangements could be made, doctors should be relieved for the colours, but that might be carried too far and insured persons mightnot have f airplay. He proposed that power be vested in the Chairman and Clerk to find out whether eligible doctors could be re- placed in certain localities with due regard to efficiency, and if not that the committee should appeal for exemption to the local tribunals. Mr Wm. Da-vid, Llanelly, in seconding, said it was important that the committee should be kept in touch with a movement of that sort as to whether they might be deprived of any doctors. It was a, very small measure of in- terference to ask the doctors to keep the com- mittee informed so that the Chairman and the Clerk might decide on the spot what was best to be done in each particular case. The proposal was adopted. TRANSFERRED. A letter was read from Mr Powell, solicitor, Llandilo, stating that the panel patients oi the late Dr Evans had been transferred to Dr Phillips, Llandilo. WAR ECONOMY. Mr Rees Da-yieg, Wliitland. gave notice of motion for the next meeting as follows: "That in view of the war and the great demand for economy that members of the insurance com- mittee should attend all meetings and confer- ences called by the Clerk at their own ex- pense for the duration of the war and six months after. Also that printed minutes and agendas of meetings be dispensed with for the same period." SOLiDIERIS AND SANATORIA. The Clerk reported that as a pa.rt of the agreement with the Memorial Association, arrangements had been made whereby insured soldiers u military hospitals suffering from tuberculosis would be transferred for sanatoria treatment. BURRY PORT OVERLAPPING. A letter read at the last meeting from a Burry Port chemist referred to alleged over- lapping among insured persons who had come to work at Pembrey. The Insurance Commissioners now wrote that with a view to putting the matter right, an official had visited the place; explanatory notices had been exhibited in prominent places; and that Mr Colby, Burry Port, had been provided with supplies of medical forms and explanatory literature. He had promised to give the workers the benefit of his adT108 wheiever possible. About 1,000 of the persons efployed at Pembrey were permanent residents of Burry Port and LJamelly, and the majority of the remaindor come and go at the rate of 15 or 20 a day.. The Clerk was instructed to (ascertain what had been the result arising out of the act-ion of the Commissioners. THE SCALE. The Insurance Commissioners wrote approv- ing of the following scale in respect or the expenses* of representatives of the committee attending meetings of the Association of Welsh Insurance Committee?, via., third class railway fare; 5s a day for a period of six hours, and 7s 6d for over six hours, a.nd 15s when absent from home overnight. RESIGNATIONS. A letter was read from Mr Noah Williams, Prudential Approved Society, resigning his membership on his removal to Holyhead. Dr Lloyd, Llanarthney, wrote stating that owing to advancing years and the fgc-t that he had railed to obtain assistance he would resign from the panel as from the 1st July next. FIVE EIGHTHS FOR THE DOCTOR. Dr Collins Davies, Narberth, wrote that he was an applicant for a commission in the R.A.M.C., and the local medical men were willing to do his work in his absence. These doctors had decided that five-eighths cf the fees they would receive woud be transferred to Dr Davies provided the total did not exceed £]00. SANATORIUM DIFFICULTIES. It was reported that 100 persons had been reeomended for sanatoria treatment since the last meeting. Mr Wm. David and Miss Brodie (Llanelly) stated that a young girl at Llanelly had beeai waiting for four months for sanatorium treat- ment, a.nd a- place had not been found for her yet. Mr David said it was a matter where they should get the National Memorial Associa- tion to act very quickly. The committee should get a guarantee that they would give treatment to their patients without undue delay. Mr J. H. Evans said it was a disgrace that a girl should have to wait four months for treatment, the treatment was no good if it was not given in the initial stages of the disease. If the comittee allowed such things to go on they were not worthy of being representatives of anyone. They should make an investi- gation in order to find out how many cases of this kind existed. If they did not get what they deserved from the Memorial Association the committee should make their own arrange ments. Dr Phillips said the committee should ascer- tain whether the case referred to was a suit- able one for sanatorium treatment. There were certain cases too advanced for treatment to be beneficial. The Clerk pointed out that the recommen- dation in the case of the girl referred to was for dispensary treatment and not Ra n n tor mi m treatment, The Chairman said that some time ago there was a considerable flutter about this matter and statements were made there that patients had to remain a very long time before they had treatment. The officers of the Mem- orial Association said they felt very much hurt indeed that those statements were allow- ed to go to the public, implying that neglect on their part had resulted in patients being kept for some months at home. They said it was not no. and that the average length of time for patients to be kept at home was nothing like what was stated there. He was sorry that they had kept this girl for four months. Carmarthenshire joined the Assoc- iation and Pembrokeshire refused to. Both counties at first stood out. Pembrokeshire honourably stood to the contract but Carmar- thenshire backed out of it. With regard to the case raised they should call the Memorial Association to account. Mr H. E. Biadgon-Richards said this delay of four months was quite uncalled for and he committee should be vigilant and see that the selection adopted by the Association. They must have perfectly fair and square treatment all round. Mr Ben Griffiths said the committee did not follow the cases up after discharge from a. sanatorium and did not try to find out whether the patients derived benefit from the three months' treatment, nor whether they had complaints to make. The committee should certainly take at least a more humane interest in the business, instead of simply paying over the money and leave the matter between the patients and the Association. The com- mittee should endeavour to show to patients that they had their interests at heart. The committee should be vigilous and see that the Association kept up to contract. Mr Ben Evans (Gwastod Abbot ) asked if there was anything to show that people did not receive the treatment recommended for. If not, all that discussion and criticism of the Memorial Association was besides the mark entirely. The Clerk replied that the girl referred to was recommended for dispensary treatment and not sanatorium treatment. "There you are" remarked Mr Evans, and the meeting I realised that the discussion was based on krong premises. "I thought it was a case for the sanatorium," said Mr H. E. B. Richards. "I thought so. too," said the Chairman, and other members said they had spoken under a wrong impression. Mr Ben Griffiths referred to an article in a newspaper in which the writer who had been a patient at a sanatorium made very grave charges against the treatment. The com- mittee should see if there was anything in them. The Clerk was directed to inquire if a mis- take had been made in the Llanelly ca.se re- ferred to in recommending the girl for dispen- sary instead of sanatorium treatment.
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