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Social Services Departments

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) when he proposes to (a) start and (b) finish the consultation exercise on social service department fines as set out in paragraph 8.10 of Delivering the NHS Plan; [64514] (2) if he will set out his plans for social services departments who are consistently fined under his proposals in Delivering the NHS Plan, paragraph 8.10. [64517]

Jacqui Smith: I refer the hon. Member to the response I gave him on the 18 June 2002, Official Report, column 235W.

Female Staff

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what percentage of the staff of his Department are women; and what the percentage was in June 1997. [66921]

Mr. Lammy: I refer the hon. Member to the reply given by the Minister of State, Cabinet Office on 5 July 2002, Official Report, column 622W.

Building Values

Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list the buildings owned by his Department and estimate the market value of each of them. [66943]

Mr. Lammy: I refer the hon. Member to the reply given my right hon. Friend the Chief Secretary to the Treasury on 3 July 2002, Official Report, column 339W.

Teenage Pregnancies

Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Health which voluntary groups are assisting the Government develop and deliver its teenage pregnancy strategy. [66711]

Ms Blears: The teenage pregnancy unit has invited a wide range of voluntary organisations to become members of a non-statutory forum, which meets twice a year. The organisations are listed below.


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Professionals from the voluntary sector also attend the independent advisory group on teenage pregnancy where, in their personal capacity, they provide advice on the teenage pregnancy strategy.

Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list the religious organisations which are involved in helping the Government deliver their teenage pregnancy strategy; and if he will make a statement on their role. [66707]

Ms Blears: Development of the teenage pregnancy strategy was informed by consultation with individuals and organisations representing a wide range of faiths.

To ensure on-going dialogue with faith groups during the implementation of the strategy, the teenage pregnancy unit has established an inter-faith forum. The forum meets twice a year to discuss particular aspects of the teenage pregnancy strategy, to consider what role faith members can play in supporting its implementation and to share examples of work in practice with faith communities. The forum has over 40 members and includes representation from the following faiths.

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In addition to the inter-faith forum, there are two members of the independent advisory group on teenage pregnancy who provide advice on the strategy from a faith perspective.

Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the funding mechanisms and funding streams for the delivery of his teenage pregnancy strategy. [66704]

Ms Blears: Since April 2002, funding to support implementation of local teenage pregnancy strategies has been routed to top tier local authorities through the teenage pregnancy local implementation grant. The resources support locally agreed teenage pregnancy strategies and action plans, developed jointly by health and local authority partners, with the aim of pump-priming promising approaches and new developments, and facilitating effective local co-ordina- tion. The local teenage pregnancy partnership board, with representation from the local authority, primary care trusts (PCTs) and other key local partners, make recommendations on the use of the grant and oversee implementation of the local action plan.

Local teenage pregnancy partnership boards also liaise with the local authorities, PCTs, and other local organisations to secure additional mainstream sources of funding to support implementation of the strategy.

In addition to the local implementation grant, the teenage pregnancy strategy is supported by other relevant Government initiatives such as the Connexions service, neighbourhood renewal and the children's fund, and funding from other Government Departments, including:


Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much funding the Government are making available for reducing teenage conceptions, broken down by non-statutory group funded in the current financial year. [66710]

Ms Blears: During this financial year, we are investing £16 million to support the implementation of local teenage pregnancy strategies which will include, at local discretion, the involvement of the voluntary sector, and a further £900,000 to support regional coordination. An additional £4 million will be invested in the teenage pregnancy strategy national campaign which includes the provision of the sexwise helpline, through the Essentia Group, and funding for Parentline Plus. In addition, a small number of projects undertaken by non-statutory organisations are supported at national level and are listed below.

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£
National Family and Parenting Institute, for consultation with parents.37,000
GFS Platform Great Yarmouth, for a conference on young parents.5,000
National Children's Bureau,68,000
for consultation with young people and to support further developments in Personal Social and Health Education, including Sex and Relationship Education. Brook,£20,000
for the development of a quality assurance framework for youth contraceptive services.

Air Pollution

Ms Buck: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the costs borne by the National Health Service as a result of illness caused from air pollution, in each Government Office Region, in the last 12 months for which figures are available. [67491]

Ms Blears: The Department's committee on the medical effects of air pollutants published a report in 1998 on "Quantification of the Health Effects of Air Pollution on Health in the United Kingdom", a copy of which is available in the Library. The report was based on levels of pollutants in 1995. It estimated that the deaths of between 12,000 and 24,000 vulnerable people (mainly those with heart or lung disease) may be brought forward and between 14,000 and 24,000 respiratory hospital admissions and readmissions may be associated with short term exposure to air pollution each year. There was insufficient information to allow quantification of other health effects of air pollution.

The Department's ad-hoc group on the economic appraisal of the health effects of air pollution estimated that the average cost to the National Health Service of a respiratory hospital admission was about £1,390 1 .


Dementia

Mr. Hepburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what his Department is doing to help increase the early diagnosis of dementia; what support groups and services there are for people with dementia and their carers in (a) Jarrow constituency, (b) South Tyneside and (c) England; and what his Department is doing to increase the availability of information about dementia to the public.[67040]

Jacqui Smith: The importance of early diagnosis of dementia is recognised in the national service framework (NSF) for older people, which was published in March 2001. Implementation of Standard 7, on mental health in older people, will increase early diagnosis. Introduction of the single assessment process, also required by the NSF, will also help.

There are a number of national organisations which provide support and services for people with dementia and their carers, including the alzheimer's society, dementia voice and carers UK. In South Tyneside, there is a network of community services, provided through the

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community services department, which support people with dementia and their carers; and other services are being developed. The Alzheimer's Society provides a wide range of support services in collaboration with the personal advisor service which works in local primary health care teams and with the specialist mental health trust. Day care facilities are provided at Palmers Community Hospital in Jarrow.

The Department is promoting the availability of information through implementation of Standard 2 of the NSF, and of the information strategy which underpins the NSF, and through more general developments to promote patient and public involvement, for example, through patient advice and liaison services.


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