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Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Romsey (Sandra Gidley) of 27 February 2000, Official Report, column 1421W, on ambulance staff, if he will provide information on the same basis for (a) the Isle of Wight and (b) other integrated ambulance services. 
Ms Blears [holding answer 14 March 2002]: Information on levels of reported violent incidents against national health service staff is collected centrally at whole trust level but not by integrated services within a trust.
Mr. Dalyell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to his answer of 13 November 2001, Official Report, column 687W, on smallpox, what recent representations he has received about smallpox vaccines. 
Mr. Hutton [holding answer 26 March 2002]: The Department of Health has received representations from industry and from the BioIndustry Association. There has been consultation with industry about its capacity and ability to deliver smallpox vaccine supplies to meet the Government's requirements.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the amount of money spent privately in the last 12 months by patients on treatments which are being assessed by NICE. 
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to his answer of 19 March 2002, Official Report, column 309W, on care homes, what information he collates on the length of time it takes for a care home to be built. 
Mr. Gale: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what information she has collated on the number of (a) adults and (b) children who are currently overweight or obese; and what percentage of each population that figure represents; 
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(3) if he will make a statement on his plans to combat obesity; 
(4) what were the main conclusions of his Department's recent response to the Ninth report of the Committee on Public Accounts on the subject of obesity; 
(5) what targets he intends to set for reductions in the levels of overweight and obesity; and what resources and strategies he will put in place to ensure that they are achieved. 
Yvette Cooper [holding answer 18 April 2002]: The Health Survey for England 2000 reported that 45 per cent. of men were overweight and 21 per cent. obese, and 34 per cent. of women were overweight and 21 per cent. obese.
The Health Survey for England 199597 reported that 22 per cent. of six-year-olds and 31 per cent. of 15-year-olds are overweight. The prevalence of obesity ranges from 10 per cent. at age six years to 17 per cent. at age 15 years.
The National Audit Office publication 'Tackling Obesity in England' reported that in 1998 30,000 deaths (of which 9,000 were before the age of 65 years) were attributable to obesity. There is an estimated direct cost to the national health service (NHS) of at least £0.5 billion a year, or about 1.5 per cent. of NHS expenditure. There is also an estimated direct cost of £2 billion a year to the wider economy.
Obesity is a complex condition, but is largely preventable through addressing the risk factors of diet and physical inactivity. The Government are committed to tackling this rising trend in obesity and are taking positive steps to improve prevention, treatment and management of obesity through the NHS Plan, Cancer Plan and national service frameworks.
We have put in place cross-Government work and local action is under way to promote physical activity and healthy eating and tackle overweight and obesity. Specifically, these include a national school fruit scheme, a wider five-a-day programme to increase access to and consumption of fruit and vegetables and work with industry to improve overall balance in diet, including salt, fat and diet. Among children, there has been significant investment in primary physical education (PE) and sports facilities, including £581 million from the new opportunities fund for a PE and sports programme.
The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has provided guidance on the anti-obesity drugs orlistat and sibutramine for the NHS. Treatment with these drugs will be supported by advice, support and counselling on diet, physical activity and behavioural strategies. NICE are also reviewing surgical interventions to treat morbid obesity, the findings of which are expected in summer 2002. Referral to NICE of further guidance topics remains under consideration.
We welcomed the Public Accounts Committee report on 'Tackling Obesity in England', published in January 2002, the official response to which was published on 21 March 2002 and has been placed in the Library.
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specific milestones for action on local programmes of effective policies on reducing overweight and obesity. Meeting these standards will contribute to achieving on of the four targets set in Our Healthier Nation, to reduce deaths from coronary heart disease by 40 per cent. in people in people under 75 by 2010.
Ms Blears [holding answer 18 April 2002]: Cold East hospital is in the ownership of the Secretary of State for Health. NHS Estates of which Inventures is a part act on behalf of Ministers to dispose of property which has been declared surplus to national health service requirements. NHS Estates are currently considering a number of options with the borough council for Cold East hospital.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what procedures have been adopted to determine if land owned and occupied by (a) PCTs, (b) acute hospital trusts, (c) health authorities and (d) his Department should be transferred to Inventures. 
Ms Blears [holding answer 18 April 2002]: Under the current proposals there is no intention to transfer land owned and occupied by primary care trusts, acute hospital trusts, health authorities or the Department of Health to Inventures.
Mr. Hunter: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if it is his policy that heart valve replacements which have been manufactured in the United States of America may be used by the NHS before they have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration in the USA. 
Ms Blears [holding answer 19 April 2002]: Artificial heart valves manufactured in the USA (or elsewhere) may be used by the national health service if they bear the CE marking, which indicates that they comply with European "essential requirements" for safety, quality and performance. Valves which do not bear the CE marking can also be used (on a restricted basis) as part of controlled clinical trials. Approval by the US Food and Drugs Administration is not a prerequisite for the use of artificial heart valves by the NHS, regardless of their country of origin.
Mr. Hunter: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what tests his Department carried out on the St. Jude 'Regent' range of valves prior to their use by the NHS; and when the St. Jude 'Regent' range of valves were first used by the national health service. 
Ms Blears [holding answer 19 April 2002]: My Department did not carry out any tests on the St. Jude 'Regent' range of artificial heart valves prior to their use by the national health service, because the valves were affixed with the CE marking, indicating that they
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complied with European "essential requirements" for safety, quality and performance. The valves received CE marking on the basis of an assessment of technical information relating to their design and safety evaluation by a Notified Body (an independent third party assessment organisation). The St. Jude 'Regent' range of artificial heart valves was first available for general use by the NHS in 1999.
Mr. Hunter: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what tests his Department carried out on the St. Jude Silzone coated mitral valve prior to its use by the NHS; and when the St. Jude Silzone coated mitral valve was first used by the national health service. 
Ms Blears [holding answer 19 April 2002]: The Department did not carry out any tests on St. Jude Silzone coated mitral artificial heart valves prior to their use by the national health service, because the valves were affixed with the CE marking, indicating that they complied with European "essential requirements" for safety, quality and performance. St. Jude Silzone coated mitral artificial heart valves were first available for general use by the NHS in 1997.
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