Previous Section Index Home Page


Welfare Foods

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the breakdown of the funding of welfare foods in 2001–02. [17318]

Jacqui Smith: Plans for this year envisage expenditure of £79 million on liquid milk, £37 million on dried baby milk and £0.03 million on vitamins (England). Administration costs are estimated at £8.5 million (Great Britain).

Health Inequalities

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if the £130 million allocated in 2001–02 to health authorities to adjust for health inequalities will be spent in 2001–02. [17316]

Jacqui Smith: The health inequalities adjustment of £130 million forms part of the total allocation to health authorities for 2001–02. It is for health authorities in partnership with primary care groups/trusts and other local stakeholders to determine how best to use their funds to meet national and local priorities for improving health, tackling health inequalities and modernising services.

Generic Drugs

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the savings to public funds in 2000–01 from price reductions in generic drugs and the effect of the maximum price scheme. [17317]

Ms Blears: Following the introduction of the maximum price scheme in August 2000 the resulting price reductions on generic medicines produced estimated savings of £330 million to the national health service in the year to August 2001 compared to March 2000 prices.

Community Dental Services

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the cost to public funds of community dental services in (a) 2000–01, (b) 2001–02 and (c) 2002–03. [17315]

Ms Blears: The information requested is not collected centrally.

Hospital-acquired Infections

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many NHS patients from the Buckingham constituency contracted hospital-acquired infections in (a) 2000 and (b) 2001. [17853]

Ms Blears: The information requested is not collected centrally.

Comprehensive information about bacteraemias, including MRSA, has been collected from all acute trusts since 1 April 2001 and this will be published showing individual Trust data from 1 April 2002.

Cancelled Operations

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many operations on residents of the Buckingham constituency have been cancelled in each quarter in (a) 2000 and (b) 2001 as a result of hospital beds being occupied by delayed discharge patients who (i) were

5 Dec 2001 : Column: 367W

awaiting social services funding or assessment and (ii) who had fully funded social services packages arranged. [17855]

Jacqui Smith: Information is not collected centrally in the format requested.

Statistics on the number of operations cancelled for non-medical reasons in each health authority are collected on a quarterly basis. Copies are available in the Library. The latest figures are for quarter 1 (April-June) of the 2001–02 financial year.

Tuberculosis (Buckingham)

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the availability of the BCG vaccine against tuberculosis in schools in the Buckingham constituency. [17857]

Jacqui Smith: Our policy is that all school children should be BCG immunised between ages 10–14 if they have not previously been immunised. Initially, in Buckinghamshire, this vaccine was offered to those students who were due to leave school in summer 2001. Where there has been sufficient vaccine and resources year 10 pupils were also offered testing and immunisation. Any current years 10 and 11 pupils who have not yet been offered the vaccine will be offered testing and immunisation during this academic year.

Further local information can be obtained from the chairman of the Buckinghamshire health authority.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Mr. Anthony D. Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he plans to publish the Chief Medical Officer's Working Group report on ME/CSF. [17961]

Jacqui Smith: The myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome working group members are currently considering amendments to their report. We hope to be in a position to publish the final report shortly.

Smoking-related Deaths

Mr. Davidson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many deaths there have been since May 1997 from stroke; how many of these were smoking related; and what plans he has to introduce a bill on tobacco advertising and promotion. [18463]

Jacqui Smith: The information is not available in the form requested. Based on 1995 figures it has been estimated that each year 18,250 deaths are caused from stroke of which 7,300 deaths are smoking related.

We are committed to bring back the Tobacco Advertising and Sponsorship Bill during the lifetime of the current Parliament.

Water Fluoridation

Stephen Hesford: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to make drinking water fluoridation more easily available in those areas which express a desire to have such water treatment; and if he will make a statement. [18650]

5 Dec 2001 : Column: 368W

Ms Blears: We have commissioned the Medical Research Council to provide scientific advice regarding the health effects of water fluoridation and suggest priorities for the further research required. Their report is expected early next year and we will be reviewing our policy in the light of the report.

NHS Direct

Mr. Reed: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the impact of NHS Direct on the number of patients visiting general practitioners in Leicestershire. [18497]

Ms Blears: Since NHS Direct east midlands was launched in February 1999 it has handled over 695,000 calls. This year alone it has handled over 340,000 calls. Where NHS Direct has acted as the first point of contact for patients seeking medical help out-of-hours, up to 50 per cent. of calls are handled without the need for onward referral to an out-of hours-doctor. By 2004 NHS Direct will be a one-stop gateway to out-of-hours health care passing on calls where necessary, to the appropriate general practitioner co-operative, including those in Leicestershire

NHS Direct is improving access to health care by advising callers which part of the national health service to contact. NHS Direct nurses routinely advise two out of three callers to use a more appropriate setting of care than the caller said they would otherwise have used. One in three callers are advised how to look after themselves at home.

NHS Dentists

Mr. Reed: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many patients in (a) Leicestershire and (b) the Loughborough constituency are registered with an NHS dentist; [18496]

Jacqui Smith: The number of patients registered with a dentist in the general dental service (GDS) in Leicestershire health authority at 30 September 2001 is shown in the table. The table also shows the number of GDS dentists who carry out the majority of their work in the area covered by Leicestershire health authority.

Information on the number of patients registered and number of GDS dentists is not available by constituency.

General dental service: number of registrations and dentists in Leicestershire health authority at 30 September 2001

Number
Registrations:
Adults330,478
Children136,141
Total466,619
Total number of dentists(37)282

(37) Dentists who do the majority of their work in Leicestershire health authority. Excludes dentists in Leicestershire health area who do most of their work in other health authorities.


5 Dec 2001 : Column: 369W

Walk-in Centre, Loughborough

Mr. Reed: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the impact of the Loughborough walk-in centre; and if he will make a statement. [18476]

Jacqui Smith: The Department has put in place systems to gather monthly management information on the operation of national health service walk-in centres, which are three-year pilot initiatives. In addition, it has commissioned an 18-month national evaluation of walk-in centres, which is being carried out by the University of Bristol. This began on 1 June 2000 and is due to report at the end of this year.

In Loughborough, general practitioner and primary care group (PCG) support was achieved on the basis that the impact of Loughborough NHS walk-in centre on local GP services would be assessed. To achieve a realistic and effective evaluation, a comparison of the "before" and "after" opening positions was considered essential.

Therefore, data have been collected by Leicestershire health authority since January 2000 until the end of June 2001. This data are in the final stages of being analysed by the local health community and it is expected to be published in a report scheduled for presentation to the local PCG some time early in the new year.

Early indications are that the walk-in centre has rapidly become an integral part of the local health community, which is greatly valued by local GPs, patients and other stakeholders.

Mr. Reed: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what level of (a) capital and (b) revenue funding he has made available to Leicestershire and Rutland Healthcare NHS Trust for the Loughborough walk-in centre. [18475]

Jacqui Smith: The level of capital and revenue funding for Loughborough national health service walk-in centre since it was established and opened on 3 July 2000 is set out in the table.

£

2000–012001–02
Capital61,000
Revenue363,000471,000


Next Section Index Home Page