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Christie Hospital NHS Trust

Mr. Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the (a) total level of investment and (b) source of funding for the recent expansion of the Christie Hospital NHS Trust. [2281]

Jacqui Smith [holding answer 4 July 2001]: The revenue income for the Christie Hospital National Health Service Trust is provided in the table.

£ million

ActualActualForecast
1999–20002000–012001–02
Total income from activities (health authorities)39.043.449.1
Other operating income30.224.924.1
Total overall income69.268.473.2

Notes:

1. Information extracted from Final Accounts for 1999–2000, pre-audit draft accounts for 2000–01 and the trust's plans for 2001–02.

2. The high level of other operating income in 1999–2000 relates to technical accounting adjustments.

3. The trust has received a significant recent growth in revenue funds from NHS sources. Specific areas include: funding for the implications of National Institute for Clinical Excellence drugs; revenue consequences of capital investments in capital equipment and four new consultant posts.

4. The trust's other operating income includes a substantial proportion of income from charitable sources.


The facilities at the trust will continue to be redeveloped and these will be provided from a variety of sources which will include exchequer funding, private finance initiative funding and charitable donations.

9 Jul 2001 : Column: 340W

Mr. Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to visit the Christie Hospital NHS Trust in Manchester; and if he will make a statement. [2280]

Jacqui Smith: [holding answer 4 July 2001]: Either I or one of my ministerial colleagues will visit the Christie Hospital later in the year.

Mobile Phones

Mr. Chaytor: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if his Department's research programme into the effects on health of mobile phone technology has been established. [2400]

Yvette Cooper: The Stewart report on mobile phones and health made a recommendation that a substantial research programme should be set up under the aegis of a demonstrably independent panel and financed by the mobile phone companies and the public sector. This programme, jointly funded by Government and industry, has now been set up under the direction of an independent programme management committee. The first call for proposals was issued at a scientific workshop held in February. The committee is currently assessing a range of research proposals, the first group of which is expected to start in October this year. Details can be found on the Department's website at www.doh.gov.uk/mobilephones.

Disabled People (Essex)

Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people are registered as disabled in the (a) Colchester, (b) North Essex, (c) Harwich and (d) Braintree constituencies. [2396]

Jacqui Smith: Information on the number of people registered with Essex council as deaf or hard of hearing and blind or partially sighted are shown in the tables. Separate information is not available by constituency. Information is not available centrally on the number of people with other forms of disability.

Table 1: Number of people registered as deaf or hard of hearing at 31 March 1998, within the former county of Essex

Number
Deaf1,553
Hard of hearing1,697
Total3,250

Source:

SSDA 910 return


Table 2: Number of people registered as blind or partially sighted at 31 March 2000 within the former county of Essex

AreaBlindPartially sightedTotal
Essex(2)5,0185,01810,036
Southend8801,2622,142
Thurrock224319543
Former county of Essex6,1226,59912,721

(2) On 1 April 1998, local government re-organisation took place and the former county of Essex was split into the unitary authorities of Southend and Thurrock and the reduced area of Essex.

Source:

SSDA 902 return


9 Jul 2001 : Column: 341W

Student Nurses

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to increase the amount of money available to student nurses in receipt of a full bursary. [2684]

Mr. Hutton: My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State announced on 13 March that there would be a substantial increase in bursary support for all national health service-funded students, including nurses.

With effect from 1 September this year the basic rate of bursary will be increased by 10.4 per cent. This is the biggest increase in bursaries since their introduction in the late 1980s and provides diploma level students (who make up the majority of the student nurse population) with an extra £500 per year.

Further bursary changes will come into effect in September providing extra help with accommodation and travel expenses for students attending practice placements.

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the impact of the bursary system on the recruitment and retention of student nurses. [2685]

Mr. Hutton: National health service bursaries provide a level of support which compares favourably with that available to other students in higher education. They will increase by 10.4 per cent. from September 2001. However the level of bursary support is only one factor influencing the recruitment and retention of student nurses.

Applicants to pre-registration nursing and midwifery training course increased by 87 per cent. over the last three years, to 34,953 in 1999–2000, the latest year for which complete data are available.

The National Audit Office earlier this year reported that attrition form training was currently 17 per cent., lower than in previous years and in line with attrition from higher education generally. 'Academic failure' was the most common reason for nurses dropping out. The Department has commissioned further research on factors influencing drop out. This will report later in the summer.

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what representations he has received to extend the availability of loans to student nurses in receipt of a full bursary. [2683]

Mr. Hutton: The current national health service support package available to degree level students comprises 50 per cent. means-tested grant and 50 per cent. student loan. In addition the student's tuition fee contribution is paid in full. This support is more favourable than that available to other United Kingdom students studying at degree level.

Students studying at diploma level receive a non- means-tested bursary and have their contribution to tuition fees paid in full. However, because diploma students receive a higher level of non-repayable, non-means-tested support for maintenance than degree students, they are not eligible for assistance through student loans.

Student loans are a matter for the Department for Education and Skills and the Student Loans Company. The overall level of support provided to national health service-funded students is kept under review by my

9 Jul 2001 : Column: 342W

Department, taking into account the views of, among others, students themselves, for instance through the NHS Student Forum.

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many student nurses were in receipt of a bursary in the (a) 2001–02 and (b) 2000–01 academic years; and how many of those have dropped out of training in each year. [2681]

Mr. Hutton: The bursary figures for the full academic year 2000–01 will not be known until 31 August 2001, the end of the academic year. As at 6 July 2001, the National Health Service Student Grants Unit (SGU) had authorised 4,117 NHS Bursary awards for degree level nursing students and 29,067 for those studying at diploma level.

Diploma students who started their training prior to September 1999 are paid a bursary by their university rather than the SGU.

The number of student nurses in receipt of a bursary for the full academic year 2001–02 will not be available until 31 August 2002, the end of that academic year.

Data on the number of student nurses who discontinued their training during 2000–01 will be published by the English National Board for Nursing Midwifery and Health Visiting later in the summer. Data for 2001–02 will not be available until next year.

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what representations he has received on increasing the value of bursaries for student nurses. [2682]

Mr. Hutton: Departmental officials undertook a review of support arrangements for National Health Service funded students last year. Representations were received from students and student bodies, professional bodies and others.

As a result Ministers considered a range of options for changes to bursaries. The 10.4 per cent. across-the-board increase in the basic rate of bursary, which my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State announced shortly after the 2001 Budget, was in response to the representations made.


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