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3 Jun 2003 : Column 77Wcontinued
Jacqui Smith: The Department of Health does not keep central records on the diagnosis of, or treatment provided to, those receiving mental health services, except in cases where an admission to hospital has occurred. However, information on the overall prevalence of mental ill health among adults living in private households is available from the Office for National Statistics (www.statistics.gov.uk).
A range of treatment, services and support is available for women and men suffering from depression, including social, therapeutic and creative activities; self-help; practical support; medication and psychological interventions.
Jacqui Smith: The improvements set out in the NHS Plan, and in the national service framework for mental health services, are designed to help all people with severe mental illness. Continued investment in services will ensure that by 2004, all people with a severe mental illness will be able to access a crisis resolution team 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Also, all people who regularly disengage from services leading to frequent relapse will be in receipt of assertive outreach services by December 2003 and all young people who develop a severe mental illness will be in receipt of early intervention services by 2004. These services are designed to help individuals, irrespective of ethnicity, but have been shown to be particularly welcomed by black and minority ethnic communities.
Services will also be assisted by comprehensive guidance for black and minority ethnic mental health services, which will be issued for consultation later this year. The National Institute for Mental Health has also set up a specific programme on black and minority ethnic mental health to assist services.
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By 2006 there will be 500 community development workers in black and minority ethnic health. These workers are there to help local minority ethnic groups engage with services and help to expand local capacity for dealing with mental health problems.
The National Institute for Clinical Excellence published an appraisal on the use of atypical anti-psychotics in the treatment of schizophrenia in June 2002 and clinical guidelines on the management of schizophrenia in December 2002. It will be for local services and health professionals to consider the impact of current and future guidance.
|Actual Spend||Budget Spend (proposed)|
|For NTA staff||34,000||30,000|
|For the field (Workforce Planning)||725,000||660,000|
Ms Blears: The National Treatment Agency (NTA) has centrally funded nine regional training and development events to date on models of care. These had a total of 1,050 participants and were highly rated on consumer satisfaction questionnaires.
All the NTA's training and development initiatives from February are in line with models of care, and will reinforce its implementation as the proxy national service framework. We also now expect drug action teams to fund any local training initiatives that they identify their local work force as requiring.
Mr. Norman: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to his answer of 11 March 2003, Official Report, column 237W, on the Food Standards Agency, what the total pay costs incurred by the Food Standards Agency were in each year since 1997. 
Ms Blears: The Food Standards Agency (FSA) was established on 1 April 2000. The total staff costs, including the devolved offices but excluding the Meat Hygiene Service, were £17,921,000 in 200001 and
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£21,315,000 in 200102. Further details, including changes in staff numbers, are set out in FSA's annual report and accounts for the relevant financial year, which are available in the Library. It is too early to provide comparable information for 200203.
Mr. Pike: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what interim measures he plans to introduce to maintain the number of dentists offering dentistry services on the NHS; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Lammy: We are legislating for far-reaching reform of national health service dental services to improve the service for dentists and patients. The Health and Social Care (Community Health and Standards) Bill proposes that each primary care trust be given a duty to provide, or secure the provision of, primary dental services in its area to the extent that it considers reasonable to do so and be given the financial resources to do this. Until this new framework is in place and to support primary care trusts in preparing for this, we plan to put in place a support team for NHS dentistry to develop interim measures of the kind referred to. The team will work closely with strategic health authorities and primary care trusts to identify which areas are most in need and to ensure that there is a rapid response to difficulties experienced by dentists working at the front-line of the NHS. New incentive directions will be made shortly to provide the necessary legal powers for PCTs to provide assistance and support to dentists, until the legislation now in Parliament provides the framework for trusts to commission NHS primary dental services themselves.
Primary care trusts will be able to help dental practices in a number of ways, for example when they are threatened by difficulties over practice premises. They will also be able to pay to increase the total amount of time that a practice devotes to NHS general dental services. It is also planned to build on existing experience of personal dental services pilot contracting, to enable committed dentists to work in the NHS without having to use the statement of dental remuneration to earn fees for items of service. This so-called treadmill has been a major source of complaint from the profession and will be abolished by the legislation before the House.
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In addition to the above, the support team will help focus national plans on local challenges where workforce availability is the key issue. As well as investing in supporting dentists and existing dental premises as part of a programme to encourage maximum NHS participation by returners to the work force, new graduates and overseas dentists, the team will support work to reinforce the existing retention and returning scheme and to work with the existing international recruitment scheme to transfer its experience for recruitment of dentists internationally.
Mr. Dhanda: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many patients have access to dental treatment on the NHS in (a) Gloucester, (b) Gloucestershire, (c) Oxfordshire, (d) Wiltshire, (e) Somerset and (f) Worcestershire. 
Ms Blears: Information on the number of patients registered with a national health service dentist for general dental services in Gloucester, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire, Somerset and Worcestershire as at 28 February 2003, is shown in the table.
|Primary care trust||Number of patients registered(7) with a dentist at 28 February 2003 (thousand)|
(7) The GDS registration period lasts for a 15 month period from the patients last attendance at the dentist.
(8) Includes Gloucester
Information on the number of patients treated under the personal dental services scheme in Gloucester, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire, Somerset and Worcestershire PCT areas for the year ending March 2003, is shown in the table. The personal dental service does not require the patient to be registered before commencing treatment. Additionally unregistered patients can gain access to NHS treatment though dental access teams in Gloucestershire, Wiltshire, Worcestershire, and Somerset.
|Pilot||Number of patients treated year ending March 2003 (thousand)||PCTs in list covered by pilot|
|Avon||7.3||Bath and North East Somerset, Bristol South and West|
|Gloucestershire||9.9||Cheltenham and Tewkesbury, West Gloucestershire, Cotswold and Vale|
|Oxfordshire||9.5||Cherwell Vale, North East Oxfordshire, Oxford City, South East Oxfordshire, South West Oxfordshire|
|Somerset||4.8||Somerset Coast, Mendip, South Somerset, Taunton Deane|
|Swindon||7.2||West Wiltshire, Swindon, Kennet and North Wiltshire|
|Worcestershire||10.4||Wyre Forest, South Worcestershire|
(9) Number of individual patients treated.
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Shona McIsaac: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many dental practices accept new NHS patients in the constituencies of (a) Cleethorpes, (b) Grimsby, (c) Scunthorpe, (d) Brigg and Goole, (e) Gainsborough, (f) Louth and Horncastle and (g) Hull, West and Hessle. 
Jacqui Smith: The number of dental practices accepting new national health service patients changes frequently. Up to date information about which dentists are accepting new NHS registrations is available from the relevant primary care trust (PCT).
I recognise that access to NHS dentistry in Cleethorpes and the surrounding area can be difficult. It is the intention of the Health and Social Care (Community Health and Standards) Bill, introduced on 12 March, to better match the provision of primary dental services with local oral health needs through local commissioning of the service. This would enable local flexibility to be built into the system, allowing PCTs to address local access issues as they arise. It is anticipated that the availability of NHS dentistry will be more predictable under the new system.
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