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Notes: Both tables exclude local work funded by the National Health Service. Table two excludes HIV awareness raising and information resources for the general population produced by the former Health Education Authority (and Health Promotion England) and the Family Planning Association through sexually transmitted infections awareness campaigns.
Whether, as part of their response to any positive recommendations from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation's review of human papilloma virus (HPV), they will provide guidance to the National Health Service on how females outside any schools-based programme will be able to access HPV vaccination; and [HL3548]
How quickly after they receive the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation's advice with respect to human papilloma virus vaccines they expect to be able to make recommendations to the National Health Service on their use. [HL3549]
The Minister of State, Department of Health (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): The department is seeking advice on the new human papilloma virus vaccine from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) which is an independent expert advisory committee. Ministers will consider advice from JCVI when it is forthcoming.
Whether they have any plans either (a) to seek a derogation from the European Union physical agents directive for the use of medical magnetic resonance imaging; or (b) not to ratify the directive. [HL3500]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Lord McKenzie of Luton): The Government are acutely conscious of concerns about this directive and recognise that it is clearly unacceptable to have a situation where its requirements are in conflict with what are important medical procedures. They are therefore seeking a way forward that balances the needs of patients with protecting workers. The European Commission and other member states are also involved. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is working with them, as well as the medical community, to find an acceptable solution.
The action being pursued includes HSE-funded research into the scale and nature of the impact of the directive on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The interim findings have already been made available to the European Commission; the final results, expected later in the year, will also be made so available. Added to this, the European Parliament has been informed of the impact of the directive on MRI; and UK Ministers and officials will continue to raise the matter in EU meetings and contacts, wherever possible.
How many individuals in the United Kingdom are estimated to (a) die prematurely, or (b) suffer serious ill health annually as a result of inhaling secondhand smoke or fumes from (i) tobacco products; (ii) herbal cigarettes containing no tobacco; (iii) incinerators and bonfires; (iv) industrial processes; (v) motor vehicles; and (vi) all other airborne pollutants. [HL3576]
The Minister of State, Department of Health (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): The Scientific Committee on Tobacco and Health (SCOTH) published a report in 2004, Secondhand Smoke: Review of Evidence since 1998Update of evidence on health effects of secondhand smoke, which found that exposure to secondhand smoke led to a 24 per cent increased risk of lung cancer and a 25 per cent increased risk of coronary disease.
A report published by Professor Konrad Jamrozik in the British Medical Journal in April 2005 (330:812), Estimate of deaths attributable to passive smoking among adults: database analysis,estimated that 10,700 people die in the United Kingdom annually due to illnesses caused by exposure to secondhand smoke.
The evidence that secondhand smoke damages health is well documented. SCOTH concluded that exposure to secondhand smoke increases the risk of heart disease and lung cancer in non-smokers, can trigger respiratory asthma attacks, and is a cause of sudden infant death syndrome. In addition, children exposed to secondhand smoke are at higher risk of developing pneumonia, bronchitis, asthma and middle ear disease.
What are the terms of reference of the two inquiries the Secretary of State for Defence has announced regarding the circumstances of the capture of British servicemen by Iran and the decisions taken regarding the publication of their accounts in newspapers. [HL3626]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Triesman): My right honourable friend the Foreign Secretary is in regular contact with the US as well as other international partners to discuss ways to move the peace process forward. We, and the US, want to see the creation of a two-state solution and an end to violence.
Lord Triesman: The UK has spoken to both the Israelis and Palestinians about industrial parks in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Our Ambassador in Tel Aviv discussed the issue with Israeli Government officials in December 2006 and more recently with Palestinian and Israeli businessmen on 7 May. Whilst we welcome any proposals which seek to support Palestinian economic development, there are a number of sensitive questions around industrial parks including security, location and upholding environmental and labour standards. Further development of the proposals on industrial parks is dependent on agreement on these points between, amongst others, the relevant Palestinian and Israeli parties.
How many general practitioners within the North Belfast and West Belfast parliamentary constituencies have undertaken depression and suicide awareness training since the launch of the Suicide Strategy for Northern Ireland in October 2006 which recommended that funding should be provided for such training; and how many general practitioners in the constituencies have not undertaken this training. [HL3535]
Whether there is a threat of any groundwater pollution as a result of the recent fuel spillage at RAF Mildenhall; and whether clean-up costs will be met by the Government of the United States. [HL3531]
The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Drayson): The threat of pollution to groundwater in the local area has been assessed as low. The situation is being closely monitored in conjunction with the Environment Agency to ensure that there is no impact to the public and private water supplies.
How many of those who have held ministerial office for the present Government have occupied or now occupy other remunerated posts in the public sector following appointment to these positions by the Government. [HL3591]
Further to the Written Statement by the Parliamentary Secretary for Biodiversity, Landscape and Rural Affairs, Barry Gardiner, on 20 February (Official Report, Commons, 25WS), whether the transfer of £4.72 million from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to the Department of Trade and Industry for socio-economical funding will be earmarked; if so, what it will be spent on; and, if not, whether any of it will stay with the rural development agencies or whether all of it will be passed to Natural England. [HL3586]
The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Rooker): The sum of £4.172 million that was transferred to the Department for Trade and Industry was earmarked to cover expenditure incurred in the delivery and development of the socio-economic elements of the current and future rural development programmes for England. None of the sum has been, or will be, passed to Natural England.
The Minister of State, Department of Health (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): The department is not aware of research that specifically estimates the number of deaths and/or cases of serious ill health related to smoking herbal cigarettes in the United Kingdom.
What are the constituents of the smoke from herbal cigarettes containing no tobacco which are harmful to human health; and to what extent these are also present in smoke from incinerators, bonfires and sundry industrial processes, and in the fumes emitted by motor vehicles. [HL3575]
Lord Hunt of Kings Heath: During the passage of the Health Bill through the House of Lords, my noble friend Lord Warner wrote on 24 April 2006 to Peers who spoke during the first sitting of Grand Committee on a number of matters regarding the smoke-free aspects of the Bill, and a copy was placed in the Library. This letter included information and references to research on emissions from herbal cigarettes.
The department is not aware of any specific research comparing emissions from the smoking of herbal cigarettes with those produced by sources such as incinerators, bonfires, industrial processes or motor vehicles.
Whether, since 2004, the Northern Ireland Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure has given directions to the Ulster Scots Agency; and, if so, when they were given; in relation to what they were given; why they were given; how the approval of the Government of the Republic of Ireland has been manifested; and whether they will place copies of all relevant documentation in the Library of the House. [HL3504]
Whether they have made an assessment of the research currently being undertaken at the University of Surrey and at the University of Albany in the United States on the public health and environmental effects of polychlorinated biphenyls and other chlorinated hydrocarbons released into the environment and, particularly, into water sources. [HL3351]
The Minister of State, Department of Health (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): The Government are not aware of what research is being carried out at the University of Surrey and the University of Albany in this area. The Committee on Toxicity of Chemicals in Food, Consumer Products and the Environment keeps under review research on dioxins and polychlorinated biphenyls, which have similar toxic properties, and will consider any significant developments in the area of human health.
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