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Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many teenagers in the UK were vaccinated against TB last year. [78188]

Ms Blears [holding answer 29 October 2002]: Information about the numbers of teenagers receiving BCG vaccinations is contained in table 4 of the statistical bulletin XNHS Immunisation Statistics, England: 2001–02". A copy of the bulletin is available in the Library and can also be found on the Department's website

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Information for Wales, Scotland and Ireland is a matter for the devolved Administrations.

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what co-ordination is in place from his Department with the Homelessness Unit at the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister in combating the rise of TB in the homeless. [78185]

Ms Blears [holding answer 29 October 2002]: Screening policy for the homeless is determined at local levels; London wide there has been regular screening of homeless people at drop-in centres, and there are studies currently looking at screening homeless people more effectively and efficiently.

United Healthcare Group

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the agreement between his Department and the United Healthcare Group. [78311]

Mr. Hutton: The government is committed to encouraging expressions of interest from successful international organisations to partner Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) in developing and testing models of integrated care in the national health service. In line with this commitment, the Department is in discussion with United Healthcare Group with a view to entering into a contractual relationship with them to provide hands-on support to a number of PCTs to test elements of United Healthcare Group's Evercare model in this country and tailor it to the needs of the NHS. Under the Evercare model, doctors and nurses in primary care work together with care staff to identify vulnerable individuals at highest risk of hospitalisation. This allows for early intervention and treatment, thus avoiding inappropriate hospital admission, and facilitating safe, early discharge where a stay in hospital is necessary. The work will be carried out under the national primary and care trust development programme to promote significant transformational change.

Waiting Lists (Eastbourne)

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many patients at Eastbourne District General Hospital waited longer than (a) four and (b) 24 hours in accident and emergency in each of the last 12 months; and what proportion they were of the total. [78699]

Ms Blears: Eastbourne Hospitals National Health Service Trust merged with Hastings and Rother NHS Trust in April 2002 to form East Sussex NHS Trust. Data are collected by NHS trust and not by individual hospital site. Therefore data are presented for Eastbourne Hospitals Trust up to March 2002. From April to September 2002, the data are for East Sussex NHS Trust as a whole.

The number of patients spending over four hours in accident and emergency (A&E), from arrival to departure, for each month in the last year is shown in the table.

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MonthPatients spending over four hours in A&ETotal A&E attendancesPercentage of total
September 20014723,17614.9
October 20015333,88913.7
November 20014843,12415.5
December 20016453,70817.4
January 20025062,81018.0
February 20024642,81016.5
March 20025113,08016.6
April 20021,0606,37116.6
May 20021,4008,39416.7
June 20021,0516,87615.3
July 20021,5608,97617.4
August 20021,2337,37616.7
September 20021,2986,00521.6

These data are taken from management information provided by the trusts and have not been validated by the Department.

Information is not collected centrally on the number of patients spending over 24 hours in A&E. Information is collected on the number of patients waiting over 12 hours for admission via A&E, the time from the clinician's decision to admit until the patient is admitted to an in-patient ward. Eastbourne District General Hospital, now part of East Sussex NHS Trust, has not reported any of these in the past 12 months.

Working Time Directive

Mr. Norman: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1)what assessment he has made of the impact on medical staffing rotas of extending the Working Time Directive to junior doctors; and if he will make a statement. [77504]

Mr. Hutton: From August 2004, junior doctors will come within the remit of the European Working Time Directive. The key aspect is that junior doctors must have 11 hours rest in every 24 hours.

It will not be possible for the National Health Service to achieve European Working Time Directive compliance by applying a single Xone size fits all" model across the whole country. Instead, compliance will be achieved with a portfolio of action at local and national level.

Individual NHS trusts will need to look critically at working patterns and whether it is necessary for doctors to be resident. Where the intensity of calls requires resident cover, it will generally be necessary to move to new patterns of working such as shifts or partial shifts.

The Department will be issuing guidance on implementation this Autumn and is working with stakeholders including the medical Royal Colleges, British Medical Association, NHS Confederation and the service to ensure that effective solutions are developed.

The Department is therefore funding a programme of pilot projects based in NHS trusts to develop and test innovative solutions to European Working Time

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Directive implementation. We are funding about 20 pilot studies in individual NHS trusts and groups of NHS trusts on innovative ways of delivering services while complying with the requirements of the post-2004 Working Time Directive legislation. The individual pilots will cover areas such as night teams, health care practitioners, nurse practitioners and whole systems service redesign.

Full details of the pilot programme will be announced shortly and will be available on the Department's website

Workplace Nurseries

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what percentage of NHS facilities have workplace nurseries attached. [77996]

Mr. Hutton: A national survey of national health service child care provision, undertaken early in 2001, found that 114 NHS trusts provided nursery facilities for their staff. Since April 2001, a further 117 schemes for new or extensions to existing nurseries have had capital funding agreed as part of the NHS child care strategy. As a criterion of funding these nurseries should, wherever possible, provide places for the use of all health care workers, including those at other NHS organisations.

Further capital funding will be made available in 2003–04 to meet the NHS plan target of 150 new nursery schemes by March 2004. All new build hospitals must also include a nursery in their plans.


Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the number of sick days taken in each of the last five years for which figures are available as a result of illness arising from overweight and obesity; and what his strategy is for addressing this problem. [74459]

Ms Blears: The National Audit Office report, XTackling Obesity in England, published February 2001", estimated that in 1998 overweight and obesity contributed to 18 million sick days. The Government are committed to tackling the rising trend in obesity. The National Health Service priorities and planning framework for 2003–2006 includes targets on reducing coronary heart disease (CHD). One of these targets requires practice-based registers and systematic treatment regimes, including appropriate advice on diet, physical activity and smoking; it also covers the majority of patients at high risk of CHD, particularly those with hypertension, diabetes and a body mass index greater than 30. The Department is working with a range of partners at national, regional and local levels, on programmes to improve diet and increase physical activity levels. Action to improve diet includes a Five-a-day programme, including initiatives with the food industry, including manufacturers and caterers, improving the overall balance of diet—working with the Food Standards Agency—and a food in schools and healthy schools programme. Plans were recently

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announced to transform physical education and school sport and club links over the next three years. There is investment to develop local exercise action pilots, led by primary care trusts, and the new opportunities fund is supporting the delivery of a physical education and sports programme.

Weight Management

Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what information is given on the database of weight management services developed by his Department; and how many times it has been updated since it was created. [74460]

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Ms Blears: The database of weight management services was completed in 1997 and made available at National Health Service regional offices for local dissemination on request. The project had two aims, one of which was to identify existing projects on weight management in the regions and to compile a directory of services. The database is a directory of weight management services in England, but does not claim to be comprehensive. Entries are arranged by region and, within each region, alphabetically by town. Each entry has details of project name, funding organisation, contact name and details and information on the services the project offers and if the project has been evaluated. The information has not been updated since publication.