Previous Section Index Home Page

Mental Health

Mrs. Helen Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how the Government's proposals stemming from (a) the White Paper on Mental Health, and (b) the policy statement on mental capacity, Making Decisions, will address the House of Lords judgment in the Bournewood case which relates to patients who lack capacity to consent; [32754]

Jacqui Smith: The ruling of the House of Lords in the Bournewood case upheld the lawfulness of the current position whereby patients who lack capacity to consent to treatment for their mental disorder, as long as they do not show resistance, can be treated without the use of formal compulsory powers in the Mental Health Act 1983. Concerns, however, were raised about these patients.

We are committed to reforming the 1983 Mental Health Act and a Bill will be introduced as soon as parliamentary time allows. As proposed in the White Paper, Reforming the Mental Health Act (December 2000), new legislation will provide the following safeguards for adult patients who have a long-term incapacity to consent and who are in a hospital or nursing home receiving treatment for a serious mental disorder:

We are also committed to bringing forward legislation on mental incapacity as soon as Parliamentary time allows. The 1999 policy statement "Making Decisions" proposes a range of measures aimed at clarifying the decision-making process on behalf of mentally incapacitated adults, including the introduction of a new system of continuing powers of attorney. These proposals will be complementary to those for mental health legislation.

Royal Shrewsbury Hospital

Mr. Paul Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement of progress made on a new building at the Royal Shrewsbury hospital to replace the Copthorne South building. [32586]

Yvette Cooper: The vacation of acute services currently on the Royal Shrewsbury hospital Copthorne South site and achieving its closure is a recognised priority both locally and regionally. The Royal Shrewsbury Hospital national health service trust and the Princess Royal hospital NHS trust have now completed the full business case and this has been submitted to the NHS west midlands regional office for approval.

7 Feb 2002 : Column 1167W

Care Homes

Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) nursing home beds and (b) residential care home beds were available per 1,000 people aged over 65 in each county of England in (i) 1997, (ii) 1999 and (iii) 2001; and what the county average is. [32702]

Jacqui Smith: Information on the number of registered nursing care beds per 1,000 population aged 65 and over in (i) 1997, (ii) 1999 and (iii) 2001 is shown by health authority in table 1; information on the number of residential care places per population aged 65 and over in (i) 1997, (ii) 1999 and (iii) 2001 is shown by local authority in table 2, which have been placed in the Library.

David Davis: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will estimate the cost to the East Riding of Yorkshire Council of the administration of the registration of care homes under the National Care Standards Commission. [32097]

Jacqui Smith: Local authorities will have to pay in 2002–03 registration fees of £1,100 for each home they own and registration fees of £300 for each home manager. This is to bring local authority owned homes on to the same charging basis as homes owned by voluntary or private organisations. The total cost of this is for the East Riding of Yorkshire council to calculate themselves. Currently their own registration unit should be charging themselves annual fees for the local authority owned homes they are inspecting. In 2002–03 the National Care Standards Commission will not be charging any annual fees for homes that have to be registered for the first time as part of the transition process under the Care Standards Act. Annual fees for such homes will be introduced in 2003–04.

Bristol Royal Infirmary

Mr. Wray: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recommendations from the Kennedy report into the Bristol Royal infirmary case the Government will adopt to improve treatment of congenital heart disease. [32538]

Mr. Hutton: The Paediatric and Congenital Cardiac Services Review Group has been established to consider the recommendations from the Kennedy Report that specifically relate to health care services and treatment for children with congenital heart disease. The group has also been asked to recommend quality standards for the paediatric and congenital cardiac service and to advise on any configuration issues that arise from those standards. The review group will report in 2002.

Road Traffic Accidents (NHS Charges)

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will withdraw the Road Traffic (NHS Charges) Amendment Regulations S.I., 2002/4030. [34978]

Ms Blears: Following representations received from the noble Lord, Lord Hunt of Wirral, and the Association of British Insurers, arrangements are now being made to revoke the Road Traffic (NHS Charges) Amendment Regulations, which came into force on 28 January 2002. Amendment Regulations will be laid before the House shortly.

7 Feb 2002 : Column 1168W

"Making It Happen"

Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how much money was spent on promoting mental health in (a) 1997–98, (b) 1998–99, (c) 1999–2000 and (d) 2000–01; [9508]

Jacqui Smith: Expenditure on centrally funded initiatives on promoting mental health is provided in the table.

£ million

Information on specific spend in health authorities is not collected.

However, following the inclusion of a mental health promotion standard in the National Service Framework for Mental Health, health and social services have been set a target to develop and agree local mental health promotion strategies by March 2002. To help support the delivery of this target the Department commissioned the development of national guidance "Making it Happen: a guide to mental health promotion", published in August 2001. This guidance cost £204,000 including publishing and distribution. 5,000 copies of "Making it Happen" were printed and distributed. The guidance is also available on the Department's website.


Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the range of daily dosages in milligrams of methadone normally recommended for use in drug control treatments. [19712]

Ms Blears: The guidance from the Department on this issue, detailed in "Drug misuse and dependence—guidelines on clinical management" (1989) makes clear that the actual dose given for an individual patient must be assessed and determined by the prescribing doctor.

The clinical guidelines recommend that depending on the individuals tolerance levels the range for the initial dose should be between 10mg and 40mg.

If a follow-up dose is required it should not exceed 30mg. However, a supplementary dose should only be considered where there is evidence of persistent opioid withdrawal. These cases need to be assessed by an experienced medical practitioner.

As far as the subsequent stabilisation period is concerned any increases in dosage should not exceed 10mg per week up to a final total of between 60 and 120mg.


Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the future provision of cancer services in Hertfordshire. [32301]

7 Feb 2002 : Column 1169W

Yvette Cooper [holding answer 1 February 2002]: The Steering Group for the Long Term Review of Mount Vernon Cancer Network and Centre has met on 30 January 2002 to consider an interim report. The Steering Group reviewed feedback that they had received since the publication of its preliminary report in September 2001, the proposed clinical model, progress on site surveys and access issues.

The Steering Group is working towards a major decision that will ensure the best possible cancer services for the population in Hertfordshire and others that use the Mount Vernon Cancer Centre. There is a great deal to consider, including the many different viewpoints of patients and communities. The Steering Group wishes to be confident of its findings before making any final recommendations later in the year.

Next Section Index Home Page