|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Jenkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made of (a) the recent report by the Association of Directors of Social Services on learning disabilities services and (b) the likely impact of its recommendations on social care in Staffordshire. 
Mr. Byrne: The Department welcomes this report as a useful piece of work, particularly in its emphasis on the importance of maintaining support for people with learning disabilities to lead their lives as independently as possible.
Mr. Byrne: We greatly value the work undertaken by children's hospices, such as Little Haven, in providing hospice care as part of the mix of palliative care services needed by families with a child who has a life-threatening condition. I am pleased to have already been able to visit a number of palliative care settings, including children's hospices.
Our guide Commissioning Children's and Young People's Palliative Care Services", launched on 29 November, has given commissioners important advice about the key aspects of children's palliative care
23 Jan 2006 : Column 1852W
which will improve the quality of commissioning and provision of services. This practical guide will stimulate improvements in commissioning and promote quality care for children, young people and their families in a range of settings, for example, palliative care at home, in hospital or in a hospice.
The funding Little Haven may receive from the national health service is a matter for negotiation between the hospice and the local primary care trusts who contract for their services. I understand an agreement is in place.
Mr. Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps her Department is taking to ensure that ambulance services are able to transport mothers further whilst in labour as a result of the closure of local maternity services. 
Mr. Byrne: The Department sets national response time requirements for ambulance trusts. It is for ambulance trusts, together with primary care trusts as commissioners of ambulance services, to ensure that these requirements are met. This includes ensuring that sufficient numbers of vehicles and staff are available to respond to 999 calls.
It is for national health service maternity care providers and primary care trusts to ensure that women have easy access to supportive, high quality maternity services, designed around their individual needs and those of their babies, and that care is provided within a framework that enables easy and early transfer of women and babies who unexpectedly require specialist care.
The maternity standard of the national service framework for children, young people and maternity services, which was published in September 2004, asks all NHS maternity care providers and primary care trusts to ensure that:
Mr. Byrne: The information requested is not collected centrally by the Department. However, a recent analysis, using data (covering the period April 2003 to March 2004) collected by Dr. Foster in their role as an independent health care information provider, shows the number of maternity units, both shared and midwife-led, by primary care trust. This has been placed in the Library.
To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many obstetrician-led maternity units there have been in England in each year since 1997; and how many maternity units delivered (a) fewer than 2,000 births,
23 Jan 2006 : Column 1853W
(b) between 2,001 and 4,000 births annually and (c) over 4,001 births in the last five years for which figures are available. 
The maternity records collected through the Hospital Episodes Statistics system are usually identified only to trust level, rather than to any specific unit within the trust. Some trusts provide information regarding the staff group with lead responsibility for care for example, midwife-led or consultant-led, but this does not allow the identification of consultant-led units.
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of referrals to therapists have been for (a) individual treatment and (b) group therapy in each of the last five years, broken down to the most local level for which figures are available. 
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will estimate the number of full-time equivalent (a) psychotherapists, (b) cognitive and behavioural therapists and (c) other therapists working in the NHS, broken down to the most local level for which figures are available. 
Mr. Byrne: Information on the number of consultants and registrar group doctors within psychotherapy and the number of qualified scientific, therapeutic and technical staff within each specified area of therapy work including psychotherapy at strategic health authority and trust level in England, as at September 2004 has been placed in the Library.
The Department does not collect information at maternity unit level. Information is collected at trust level, which has been placed in the Library. At September 2005, the rate of vacancies lasting three months or more for midwives has fallen to 1.8 per cent, compared to 3.3 per cent, year earlier and the number of vacancies at 348 was the lowest since before 1999.
23 Jan 2006 : Column 1854W
Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many times she has visited (a) Dacorum and (b) Hertfordshire in her official capacity in the last 12 months; and what the purpose was of each visit. 
Steve Webb: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans she has to make additional funding available to primary care trusts to pay for newly licensed drugs; and if she will make a statement. 
PCTs have been informed of their revenue allocations up to the end of 200708. The 200608 allocations represented £135 billion investment in the national health service. Over the two years covered by this allocation, PCTs will receive an average increase of 19.5 per cent.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|