Previous Section Index Home Page


Disability Living Allowance

Mr. Webb: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will estimate the number of people who will be affected by the changes to the eligibility criteria for the payment of the lower rate mobility component of disability living allowance, as laid down in S.I., 2002, No. 648; and if he will make a statement. [48911]

Maria Eagle: The provisions of S.I. 2002 No. 648 (The Social Security (Disability Living Allowance) (Amendment) Regulations 2002) now form part of the qualifying conditions for the lower rate mobility component of disability living allowance. They potentially affect any claims for the component which are based on fear or anxiety experienced when walking out of doors without guidance or supervision from another person on unfamiliar routes. About 200 people who are known to have qualified for the component as a result of the Tribunal of Social Security Commissioners decision R(D)4/2001, which gave rise to the need for the regulations, may well be affected, but this will depend on the individual circumstances of each claim. As explained in Command Paper 5469 published at the same time as the Regulations, longer-term estimates of people affected can only be made in very general terms.

Asylum Seekers

Sir Michael Spicer: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what assessment he has made of the additional funding required for social services if an asylum seekers centre were to be established at Throckmorton airfield. [48724]

Mr. Hutton: I have been asked to reply.

Proposals for trial accommodation centres for asylum seekers include primary health care facilities on site, to be funded by the Home Office. As yet, no assessment has been made in respect of any additional health or social care needs. The Department and the Home Office are working closely on these matters.

HEALTH

Telecommunications Masts

Mrs. Browning: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will place in the Library all guidance sent to local authorities in respect of the Stewart report recommendations on a cautionary approach to planning and adoption of ICNIRP guidelines. [51606]

Ms Keeble [holding answer 22 April 2002]: I have been asked to reply.

On 22 August 2001 we significantly strengthened the planning arrangements for telecommunications development and introduced two sets of regulations and a revised Planning Policy Guidance Note 8, 'Telecommunications' (PPG8).

The revised PPG8 takes account of the conclusions of the Stewart report and provides advice about taking account of health considerations in making planning

24 Apr 2002 : Column 348W

decisions about telecommunications development. Copies were placed in the House Libraries at the time of its publication.

Health Checks (Over-75s)

Dr. Murrison: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of over-75s have undergone health checks in each year since their introduction. [42088]

Jacqui Smith: This information is not held centrally. General practitioners who work under the national framework for general medical services are required to offer an annual health check to each of their patients who is aged at least 75. The requirement on general practitioners working under the locally managed framework of personal medical services is more flexible. In neither case, however, are data on patient take-up collected.

Edgware Hospital

Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of waiting times at Edgware UTC walk-in centre; and if he will make a statement. [45822]

Mr. Hutton: Waiting time data for walk-in centres is collected through the NHS Clinical Assessment System.

Work is currently under way to pilot a new reporting system. Data on waiting times at Edgware walk-in centre, and other walk-in centres across the country, will be available shortly.

Hospital Security

Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much was spent (a) in 1996–97, (b) in 1997–98, (c) in 1998–99, (d) in 1999–2000, (e) in 2000–01 and (f) in 2001–02 to the present date on hospital security, broken down by regional health authority. [46289]

Ms Blears: Regional health authorities were replaced by regional offices of the NHS executive in April 1996 with the reorganisation of the NHS.

Collection and analysis of the data on hospital security costs began in 2000, when NHS Estates took over responsibility for facilities management services. Data for the two years available is as follows, broken down by regional offices of the Department of Health:

Region1999–20002000–01
Northern and Yorkshire5,245,4625,177,717
Trent2,690,5845,704,167
West Midlands2,826,8612,485,001
North West5,189,9605,767,996
Eastern2,290,6791,165,665
London11,855,54010,362,916
South East5,797,6065,047,260
South West1,814,3402,004,762

Doctors' Premises

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many family doctors' premises have had completed refurbishments since the publication of the NHS National Plan. [47017]

24 Apr 2002 : Column 349W

Mr. Hutton: The latest information as at 31 December 2001 indicates that 640 general practitioner premises have been refurbished with a further 276 new or replaced.

Private Finance Initiative

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the total savings to public funds of the Private Finance Initiative contract for linear accelerators for the Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust by comparison with a non-Private Finance Initiative alternative. [49513]

Ms Blears: The business case justifying the individual schemes estimating the net savings in present value terms (ie all future costs and benefits discounted to their present values) compared with publicly funding the scheme is shown in the table.

Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust

Net present costs of PSC v. PFI option
PFI (£000)4,500
Public (£000)5,100
Savings in net present value terms (£000)600
Percentage difference13.3

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the total savings to public funds of the Private Finance Initiative contract for the residences for Poole Hospital NHS Trust by comparison with a non-Private Finance Initiative alternative. [49508]

Ms Blears: The business case justifying the individual schemes estimating the net savings in present value terms (ie all future costs and benefits discounted to their present values) compared with publicly funding the scheme is shown in the table.

Poole Hospital NHS Trust

Net present costs of PSC v. PFI option
PFI (£000)1,577
Public (£000)1,761
Savings in net present value terms (£000)184
Percentage difference11.6

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the total savings to public funds of the Private Finance Initiative contract for the Patient Administration System for Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust by comparison with a non-Private Finance Initiative alternative. [49546]

Ms Blears: The business case justifying the individual schemes estimating the net savings in present value terms (ie all future costs and benefits discounted to their present values) compared with publicly funding the scheme is shown in the table.

Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust

Net present costs of PSC v. PFI option
PFI (£000)2,900
Public (£000)3,400
Savings in net present value terms (£000)500
Percentage difference17.2

24 Apr 2002 : Column 350W

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the total savings to public funds of the Private Finance Initiative contract for the Brain Injury Rehabilitation Unit for the North Bristol NHS Trust by comparison with a non-Private Finance Initiative alternative. [49520]

Ms Blears: The business case justifying the individual schemes estimating the net savings in present value terms (ie all future costs and benefits discounted to their present values) compared with publicly funding the scheme is shown in the table.

North Bristol NHS Trust Brain Injury Rehabilitation Unit

Net present costs of PSC v. PFI option
PFI (£000)94
Public (£000)232
Savings in net present value terms (£000)138
Percentage difference147

Mental Health

Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent assessment he has made of the standard of care provided by clinics offering electric shock therapy for mental illness; what arrangements are in place to monitor and inspect these clinics and this practice; and if he will make a statement. [48867]

Jacqui Smith: Health professionals and mental health services managers are expected to ensure that electro- convulsive therapy (ECT) is administered to patients in accordance with the guidance issued by the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

In September 1998, the Chief Medical Officer and the President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists wrote to the chief executives of national health service trusts, consultant psychiatrists indicating the need to consider and improve standards of ECT administration in relation to ongoing developments in clinical governance.

The college has a special committee on ECT and in 1995 it published detailed guidance entitled, "The ECT Handbook—The Second Report of the Royal College of Psychiatrists' Special Committee on ECT". This is an important source of practical guidance for health professionals, mental health services managers and patients and includes sections on clinical guidelines; the use and administration of ECT; anaesthesia in ECT; the staffing and layout of ECT suites; matters relating to the law and consent. The appendices include, for example, nursing guidelines in relation to ECT and check lists for good practice in the provision of ECT services. The college is aware of the need to update this guidance and hopes to publish a revised handbook by the end of this year.

The college has established plans to set up an ECT accreditation service and is initially planning to conduct some pilot visits. Currently the college undertakes regular

24 Apr 2002 : Column 351W

accreditation visits for senior house officer (SHO) training schemes and ECT services are examined to some extent (because some SHOs seeking accreditation may administer ECT). The college's visiting accreditation teams reserve the right not to accredit that part of a particular training scheme if, for example, there is inadequate training and supervision of SHOs.

The Mental Health Act Commission (MHAC) was set up to help safeguard the interests of all people detained under the Mental Health Act 1983. As part of its work in visiting detained patients MHAC commissioners routinely check on standards of ECT administration.

As part of its ongoing programme of clinical governance reviews the Commission for Health Improvement carries out observations on services provided in hospitals of which ECT is a key area.

Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of current mental health promotion and early intervention services for children and adolescents. [47436]

Jacqui Smith [holding answer 10 April 2002]: The promotion of children's mental health and the prevention of mental ill-health in childhood are central to many Government programmes.

24 Apr 2002 : Column 352W

The mental health national service framework has set mental health promotion as its first standard. The Department's mental health project team has recently published an "update" on this standard in which examples of good practice in the promotion of mental health of children and young people at school are described.

The team is also involved in work to promote children's mental health within early years and school settings, including collaboration with the Department for Education and Skills on further initiatives to help schools promote mental health.

To assist future policy development the Department commissioned a research project on the provision of children's mental health care within primary care. A report of the project has been received and arrangements for publication are being made by the research team.

Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many acute psychiatric beds there (a) were in London in (i) 1992 and (ii) 1997 and (b) are; and what the occupancy rate mental health wards in the capital (1) were in (X) 1992 and (Y) 1997 and (2) are. [48863]

Jacqui Smith: Information on beds in wards designated as mental illness short stay/secure is given in the table.

Average daily number of available and occupied beds in mental illness—short stay/secure wards, London regional office area, 2000–01, 1996–97 and 1991–92

Mental illness
Children(11)Elderly(11)Secure unit(12)Other ages(11)Total acute mental illness beds
2000–01
Available beds761,0455653,1984,884
Occupied beds579065253,1034,591
Percentage occupancy76.186.793.097.094.0
1996–97
Available beds501,0304583,0064,544
Occupied beds358824312,8354,183
Percentage occupancy69.685.794.294.392.1
1991–92
Available beds788371503,0684,133

(11) Short stay

(12) Other ages

Note:

Percentages may not match exactly due to rounding

Source:

KH03—Bed availability and occupancy


We are improving and modernising community mental health services to relieve the pressure on in-patient beds. The NHS Plan contained a commitment to create 335 crisis resolution teams, 50 early intervention teams and a further 50 assertive outreach teams by 2004, so that patients can benefit from these alternatives to in-patient care.

Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of the people detained at 31 March 2001 under the Mental Health Act 1983 in private nursing homes were funded by the national health service. [49774]

Jacqui Smith: The Department does not collect information on how patients, detained under the Mental Health Act 1983 in private nursing homes, are funded.


Next Section Index Home Page