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14 Oct 2002 : Column 522W—continued

Departmental Jobs

Annabelle Ewing: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many jobs under the remit of his Department in (a) the core department, (b) non-departmental public bodies, (c) executive agencies and (d) independent statutory bodies, organisations and bodies financially sponsored by his Department and other such organisations, are located in (i) Scotland, (ii) England, excluding Greater London, (iii) Greater London, (iv) Wales, (v) Northern Ireland and (vi) overseas, broken down by (A) whole time equivalent jobs and (B) the pecentage per individual department, body or organisation. [72735]

Mr. Lammy [holding answer 24 July 2002]: The information requested is shown in the table.

(i) Scotland(ii) Rest of England (iii) London (iv) Wales(v) Northern Ireland (vi) Overseas
Dept/Body/OrganisationCountries covered No (FTE)%ageNo (FTE)%ageNo (FTE)%ageNo (FTE)%ageNo (FTE)%ageNo (FTE)%ageTotal FTE
(a) Core Department (excluding agencies)England00.01,651.731.21,983.737.500.000.000.03,635.4
(b) Commission for Health ImprovementEngland & Wales00.000.0184.0100.000.000.000.0184.0
(b) General Social Care CouncilEngland00.019.924.760.875.300.000.000.080.7
(b) Human Fertilisation and Embryology AuthorityUK00.000.034.0100.000.0000.000.034.0
(b) National Biological Standards Board (UK)UK00.0236.0100.000.000.000.000.0236.0
(b) National Care Standards CommissionEngland00.01,64289.7189.010.300.000.000.01,831
(b) National Radiological Protection BoardUK26.09.0285.091.000.000.000.000.0311.0
(b) Public Health Laboratory ServiceUK00.01,945.065.9742.025.1255.08.65.00.100.02,947.0
(c) Medicine Controls AgencyUK00.024.10.5431.38.200.000.000.0455.4
(c) Medical Devices AgencyUK wide for regulatory activities. As DH in respect of all other business activities. 00.08.80.2129.02.400.000.000.0137.8
(c) NHS EstatesEngland00.0302.65.720.00.400.000.000.0322.6
(c) NHS Pensions AgencyEngland & Wales00.0445.18.400.000.000.000.0445.1
(c) NHS Purchasing and Supply AgencyEngland (Although a few contracts are shared throughout the UK) 00.0291.25.500.000.000.000.0291.2
(d) see note 1 & 2

Key

(a) Core Department (excluding agencies)

(b) Non-departmental public bodies

(c) Executive agency

(d) Independent statutory body, organisations and bodies financially sponsored by department

Notes

1Information on Independent statutory bodies listed is not held.

The General Chiropratic Council

The General Dental Council

The General Medical Council

The General Optical Council

The General Osteopathic Council

The Health Professions Council

The Nursing and Midwifery Council

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain

2The Department does not hold information on numbers or location details for organisation and bodies financially sponsored by the Deparetment.

Percentage score for A & C, when added together, equals 100%


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Teenage Pregnancy

Mr. Flook: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the teenage pregnancy rate in Taunton was at the latest date for which figures are available. [73271]

Ms Blears: The under 18 conception rate for the Taunton Deane District Council area was 40.2 per thousand for the period 1998–2000, the latest period for which data have been published by the Office for National Statistics. Teenage pregnancy rates are usually measured by the under 18 conception rate. The teenage pregnancy strategy has set a target to halve the national rate by 2010.

The corresponding rates for Somerset County, the south west region and England were 38.0, 37.4 and 44.9 respectively.

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Heroin

Mr. Stinchcombe: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what (a) studies and (b) pilots have been undertaken since 1972 into the impact on (i) crime levels and (ii) health indicators of prescribing heroin. [66662]

Ms Blears: There is very limited United Kingdom research in the area of heroin prescribing. Given the current use of injectable methadone in the UK and also a smaller number of opiate addicted individuals currently receiving injectable heroin, potentially there are difficulties in recruitment to suitably sized and rigorous research studies. Those studies that have been reported from the UK since 1972 do not give definitive results as to the effect of heroin treatment on health and crime but indicate potential benefits and risks.

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Hartnoll et al (1980) reported a London study carried out in the early 1970's comprising injectable heroin and oral methadone treatment in patients assessed as dependent on heroin. There were no differences between the two groups in health outcomes at 12 months and no consistent differences in levels of crime identified though there were methodological problems in comparing the two groups appropriately.

McCusker et al (1996) reported the introduction of heroin prescribing to one of three English community drug teams but no conclusions could be drawn about the impact of the heroin treatment and outcomes due to the methodology used.

Battersby et al (1992) in a descriptive study of injectable opiates are reported to have shown reductions in illicit drug use and criminality with little improvementshown in health, also raising some concerns about continued unsafe injecting practice.

Metrebian et al (1998) studied the use of either injectable heroin or injectable methadone for those doing badly on oral methadone. This suggested that the use of injectable methadone could be a viable alternative to injectable heroin in some and that the use of injectable opiate treatment in those who had failed oral treatments could lead to improvement in those who remained in treatment, in health and levels of criminal activity. They concluded that injectable heroin is not necessarily the drug of choice given the availability of injectable methadone.

The more recently reported Swiss and Dutch studies are not directly applicable to the UK context, the Swiss study being in effect a feasibility study. However, both have produced results indicating the possibility of benefits for health and crime, for a minority of patients

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who are carefully selected long term opiate addicts who have failed in other treatments including oral methadone treatment.

No pilots have been identified that contribute to assessing the impact of injectable heroin on health and crime.

Treatment (Postcode Prescribing)

Mr. Andrew Hunter: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what recent representations he has (a) made and (b) received about the non-prescribing of NICE approved treatment by primary care trusts on financial grounds; and if he will make a statement; [71916]

Mr. Lammy The Department has made no such representations and according to the Department's records, none have been received recently from primary care trusts (PCTs) and other National Health Service trusts about the alleged continuation of postcode prescribing of treatments.

PCTs are under a statutory obligation, set out in directions, to provide appropriate funding for treatments recommended by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence.

PCTs have been made aware of these statutory obligations. I have not made any representations about alleged non-compliance with them, nor according to the Department's records, have any such representations been received.