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Steve Webb: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate she has made of the number of non-urgent referrals by general practitioners each year for investigations into possible breast cancer which are later identified as having breast cancer. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: All women with suspected breast cancer should be referred urgently by their general practitioner under the two week out-patient waiting time standard. From the data centrally collected, we cannot identify those women who were routinely referred with other breast conditions but who were subsequently diagnosed with breast cancer. The number of patients who were treated for breast cancer who were referred under the two week wait and those who were referred through other routes is shown in the table.
|Number of patients treated for breast cancer who were urgently referred under the two week wait||Number of patients treated for breast cancer who were referred through other routes(45)||Percentage of patients treated for breast cancer who were referred through other routes(45)|
The Cancer Plan target of 31 days from diagnosis with cancer to first treatment, to be achieved from December 2005, picks up those patients who are referred with other conditions but who are subsequently diagnosed with cancer to ensure they receive prompt treatment.
Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many operations were cancelled by Lancashire hospital trust (a) for medical reasons and (b) because of lack of beds at (i) Royal Preston hospital and (ii)Queen's Park hospital in each month between January 2004 and September 2005. 
Mr. Byrne: The information is not available in the format requested. However, information relating to the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals National Health Service Foundation Trust and the East Lancashire Hospitals NHS trust is available on a quarterly basis which is shown in the following table.
|Number of last minute cancelled operations|
|Q4||January to March||145|
|Q1||April to June||102|
|Q2||July to September||114|
|Q3||October to December||059|
|Q1||April to June||123|
|Q2||July to September||84|
|Number of last minute cancelled operations|
|Q4||January to March||166|
|Q1||April to June||176|
|Q2||July to September||156|
|Q3||October to December||127|
|Q4||January to March||130|
|Q1||April to June||112|
|Q2||July to September||82|
We have previously provided Breakthrough Breast Cancer with £40,000 to fund their To develop the voice of breast cancer patients" project. This project was aimed at difficult to reach groups, ethnic minorities and socially disadvantaged.
Thanks to the work of the Prostate Cancer Advisory Group (PCAG) we now have, for the first time, a definitive set of key messages for the general public about the prostate, including prostate cancer. 20 voluntary, patient and professional groups have signed up to the key messages.
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We are currently providing £105,000 to the Prostate Cancer Charity to improve awareness of the risks and symptoms of prostate cancer in African and Afro-Caribbean men in Britain. We have previously provided the Prostate Cancer Charity with £135,000 to fund a project to increase awareness of prostate cancer in all men.
The Department has made no formal estimate of the number of care home places available between 2005 and 2007. However, according to the latest United Kingdom market survey, published in September 2005 by the independent healthcare analysts Laing and Buisson, the level of spare capacity in the care home sector has remained the same over the last three years, at 10,000 to 15,000 places, despite the fall in the number of care home places.
Jane Kennedy: Responsibility for the provision of local services rests with local national health service organisations working in conjunction with local stakeholders and their strategic health authorities. I understand that the local disposition of services between Barnet hospital, which is a new private funded initiative funded hospital, and Chase Farm hospital is proposed to be the subject of an engagement exercise with local people. There is still much further work to be done taking into account the results of engagement before proposals reach the stage of formal consultation which is expected in the new year.
A strategic outline case has already been approved for an £80 million development on the Chase Farm site which would replace many of the old Victorian buildings. A revised outline business case is expected by the North Central London strategic health authority towards the end of November for the development which will need to be seen in the context of the future services on the site. It offers a good opportunity to replace unacceptable buildings and to demonstrate a commitment for appropriate services on the Chase Farm hospital site well into the future.
To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what assessment she has made of the likely
14 Dec 2005 : Column 2132W
effects of the Choose and Book programme not being fully operational on the predicted date on primary care trusts' ability to meet their targets; 
Mr. Byrne: Meeting the public service agreement targets on booking and choice is not dependent on the choose and book service, as manual systems are available. Implementation and utilisation of the choose and book service requires complex changes to local information technology systems and management and clinical staff practices, which presents considerable challenges. National roll-out of choose and book is progressing, supported by the Department and NHS Connecting for Health. Utilisation is now increasing rapidly and it is anticipated that this will continue through 2006.
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