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Euthanasia

Lord Alton of Liverpool asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath: These have no implications for the Government's policy of complete opposition to euthanasia.

Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

Lord Marlesford asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath: For reasons of patient confidentiality the information cannot be supplied in the form requested. The information that can be supplied is set out in the following tables:

Table 1: Cases of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob (vCJD) disease in the UK by age at death and sex of patient

Age at deathSex
0-100 male
0 female
10-192 male
5 female
20-298 male
13 female
30-398 male
5 female
40-492 male
1 female
50-591 male
2 female
59+0 male
0 female

8 Nov 1999 : Column WA124

Table 2: Cases of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob (vCJD) disese in the UK by country and county of residence at onset of disease and number in each county.

County of residence at time of onset of diseaseNumber of Cases
England:
Greater London4
Hampshire4
Kent3
Tyne and Wear2
Greater Manchester2
Merseyside2
Humberside2
West Yorkshire2
Leicestershire2
Cheshire2
Cumbria1
North Yorkshire1
South Yorkshire1
Hertfordshire1
Cambridgeshire1
Cleveland1
Warwickshire1
Surrey1
Oxfordshire1
Wiltshire1
Scotland:
Strathclyde3
Lothian3
Fife1
Orkney1
Wales:
Gwynedd1
Clwyd1
West Glamorgan1
Northern Ireland:
Antrim1

Table 3: Cases of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) in the UK by date of death and date vCJD confirmed¡

Date/month of deathDate/month vCJD confirmed
05/9509/95
11/9501/96
11/9501/96
01/9601/96
01/9601/96
02/9603/96
02/9603/96
02/9602/96
05/9603/96
06/9604/96
06/9607/96
09/9609/96
11/96*
02/9706/97
02/9707/97
03/9705/97
03/9702/97
05/9706/97
05/9709/95
06/9706/97
07/9710/97
10/9711/97
12/9709/96
01/9803/98
03/9805/98
04/9806/98
05/9805/98
08/9810/98
08/9810/98
10/9810/98
10/9811/98
10/9811/98
10/9811/98
10/9812/98
11/9802/99
11/9802/99
11/98*
12/9810/99
12/9802/99
12/9803/99
01/9902/99
02/9909/99
02/9906/99
02/9905/99
07/9907/99
08/9908/99
09/9909/99

¡At present there are no fully validated criteria for the diagnosis of vCJD before death. For most cases confirmation of the cause of death is ascertained by neuroathological examination of the brain post-mortem. A few cases have been confirmed through brain biopsy whilst the patient is still alive.

*Cases not confirmed neuropathologically and therefore classed as 'probable vCJD'


8 Nov 1999 : Column WA125

NHS Trusts: Procurement Efficiency

Lord Morris of Manchester asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What representations they have had from emPOWER in regard to the Department of Health's proposed 3 per cent "efficiency savings" from trusts' procurement; and what action they will be taking.[HL4356]

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath: My honourable friend the Minister of State, Department of Health (Mr Hutton) has received a letter on this subject from emPOWER. The Cabinet Office review of NHS procurement, which was published in June, recommended that each NHS trust should set a quantified and dated overall procurement efficiency improvement target. The Department of Health's public service agreement reiterates this and commits the department to monitoring the savings made. Health Service Circular HSC1999/143, which announced the publication of the review, asked NHS trusts to set targets for such savings of at least 3 per cent a year. Copies of the circular are available in the Library.

World Heritage Sites: Land Use

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What bearing the common agricultural policy has on land use in World Heritage Sites.[HL4441]

8 Nov 1999 : Column WA126

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: Of the 11 World Heritage Sites in England, only Stonehenge, Avebury and Hadrian's Wall have significant land in agricultural use. Archaeological sites and historic features can be damaged by agricultural activities but, to discourage further cultivation, only land in arable rotation on 31 December 1991 is eligible for arable area payments under the CAP. Under the CAP's agri-environment programme, MAFF operates the Environmentally Sensitive Areas and Countryside Stewardship Schemes which provide incentives to farmers to protect and enhance wildlife, landscape and historic features. The Wiltshire Downs, which cover the Stonehenge and Avebury World Heritage Site, and Hadrian's Wall are target areas for Countryside Stewardship.

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether the present state of planning law and land use law in World Heritage Sites is adequate for the Government to be able to fulfil their obligations under the World Heritage Convention; and, if not, how they can improve it; and[HL4440]

    Whether the laws of agricultural tenancy differ in World Heritage Sites from elsewhere; and, if so, how.[HL4395]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: World Heritage Site status does not affect land ownership or tenancy agreements. A prerequisite for World Heritage Site status is the existence of effective legal protection; the statutory protection in the UK provided through listing, scheduling and conservation areas meets the requirements of the World Heritage Convention. Furthermore, the Government's Planning Policy Guidance Note 15, Planning and the Historic Environment, makes clear that World Heritage Site status is a key material consideration when applications for planning permission and listed building consent are required.

Stonehenge

Lord Kennet ask Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they support the draft planning brief for the Stonehenge World Heritage Site visitors' centre prepared by English Heritage's commercial agents, and particularly the proposal that the commercial operator of the visitors' centre should provide the heritage funding for improvements to the A.303 (including a cut-and-cover tunnel) and a by-pass for Winterbourne Stoke.[HL4324]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: The planning brief submitted to Salisbury District Council by English Heritage and the National Trust is consistent with the objectives of the Stonehenge master plan, to which the Government are fully committed. I understand that the brief has now been endorsed by the council's planning committee. The A.303 road improvement scheme is the responsibility of the

8 Nov 1999 : Column WA127

Highways Agency and will be paid for from public funds.

Lord Kennet asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What are the "associated sites" mentioned in English Heritage's appellation of the Stonehenge, Avebury and Associated Sites World Heritage Site; and what management plan is being prepared for them.[HL4503]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: There are 196 scheduled monuments, mainly burial mounds, in the Stonehenge part of the World Heritage Site, including Woodhenge, the henge enclosure at Durrington Walls, the Avenue and the Cursus, all of which are included in the management plan currently under preparation. There are 67 scheduled prehistoric sites within the Avebury World Heritage Site, including the Sanctuary, Silbury Hill, West Kennet Avenue, the West Kennet Long Barrow and Windmill Hill, all of which are covered by Avebury World Heritage Site Management Plan.

National Museums and Galleries

The Earl of Clancarty asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether the security arrangements for the storage facilities of the national museums and galleries are satisfactory, and, if not, whether they will take steps to ensure their improvement; and[HL4259]

    Whether they consider that the national museums and galleries are properly aware of the content of the collections.[HL4260]

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: Cataloguing and security arrangements for the national collections are of the utmost importance, and significant resources have been invested in this area over recent years. Each institution has put in place appropriate policies and procedures, and the introduction of better documentation standards has helped to improve stewardship.

The national museums and galleries are not complacent in this area, and they are constantly seeking to improve their performance. The heads of security of the national museums and galleries meet the security adviser of the Museums and Galleries Commission on a regular basis to discuss security breaches and any new guidance and innovations.


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