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Mr. Gordon Marsden: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office if she will set out, including statistical information relating as directly as possible to the constituency, the effect on the Blackpool, South constituency of her Department's policies and actions since 2 May 1997. 
Mr. Stringer: The Cabinet Office is responsible for a range of functions which cover England as a whole, or in relation to non-devolved matters, Great Britain or the United Kingdom. It is therefore not possible to say what their specific impact is on a particular constituency. Additionally, any policy changes arising from reports from Cabinet Office units, such as the Social Exclusion Unit and the United Kingdom Anti-Drugs Co-ordination Unit, are implemented by the appropriate Government Department rather than by the unit itself.
Ms Stuart: We welcome the research by Dr. Donnelly, of Imperial College, London, which was published in Nature on 14 December. It is important that decisions on food safety are based on sound science.
Dr. Donnelly's research showed that, if the United Kingdom's ban on the sale for human consumption of beef from animals aged over 30 months at time of slaughter is enforced, and if the French Government's controls on cattle feed have eliminated the feed-borne transmission of BSE to French cattle born after mid-1996, there is virtually no risk from French beef consumed in the UK.
Mr. Yeo: To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the statement by the Minister of State, Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries and Food, the right hon. Member for Gateshead, East and Washington, West (Ms Quin) of 21 December 2000, Official Report, column 558, if he will
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publish the evidence on which the Minister based her claim that over-30-month beef is not used in processed products sold in Britain. 
Ms Stuart [holding answer 22 January 2001]: My right hon. Friend did not claim that, but referred to signs from manufacturers and retailers that they were using beef from cattle that were not over 30-months-old at slaughter. This information had been obtained by the Food Standards Agency and by local authorities in connection with increased enforcement checks on compliance with the generally applicable ban on the sale for human consumption of beef from cattle aged over-30-months at slaughter (the OTM rule). The Meat Hygiene Service and local authorities were required to carry out those checks by the FSA from last November. High levels of compliance were found and some companies changed their procurement arrangements to ensure that appropriate supplier documentation confirmed compliance with the OTM rule.
Ms Stuart: I am informed by the Food Standards Agency that responsibility for the enforcement of meat hygiene legislation in licensed poultry slaughterhouses in Great Britain rests with the Meat Hygiene Service (MHS), and in Northern Ireland with the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Information relating to Great Britain is not available in the form requested as MHS data are based on cause of condemnation rather than whether the carcase was partially or fully condemned. However, it is estimated that in 1999, approximately 6.6 million whole carcases from poultry weighing under 2kg (a category that includes broiler chickens, cast hens and other poultry) were condemned as unfit for human consumption post-slaughter. This represents approximately 1 per cent. of the total throughput of poultry weighing under 2kg slaughtered in Great Britain during that period.
Mr. Tony Lloyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when his Department first contacted the hon. Member for Manchester, Central concerning his letter of 3 August 2000 regarding catering services for Manchester Central Healthcare Trust; and if he will make a statement. 
Ms Stuart [holding answer 13 February 2001]: A reply to my hon. Friend's letter of the 3 August was sent on 29 March 2001. A letter from the Department's Permanent Secretary/Chief Executive was also enclosed apologising for the unacceptable delay.
Mr. Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he expects to respond to the letters from Mr. D. Wardell of Woodmancote, Gloucester, dated 30 November 2000 and 31 December 2000, on the subject of the use of mobile phones. 
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Yvette Cooper: The local primary care group is working actively to improve diagnosis of cancer and improve screening rates. Battersea residents will benefit from our plan to reduce cancer waiting times through the creation of clinical networks and through investment in better equipment.
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complete a nationally recognised training course and should gain supervised driving experience under blue light conditions, before commencing full front-line duties.
The Driving Standards Agency (DSA) is currently looking at the core competencies required for driving various kinds of emergency vehicles under blue light conditions. Any changes recommended by the DSA will be incorporated into the ambulance driver-training programme.
Mr. St. Aubyn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what (a) quantitative and (b) qualitative analytical work his Department has commissioned from GGC/NOP since 1 May 1997; and what was (i) the cost of the contract and (ii) the specific nature of the work commissioned. 
Ms Stuart [holding answer 28 March 2001]: The table shows quantitative and qualitative analytical work commissioned direct by my Department and via the Central Office of Information from GGC/NOP since 1 May 1997.
We are committed to consulting and involving the public to help inform both policy formulation and the delivery of a better quality public service. Responsive public services are an important part of the modernising government initiative.
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|Nature of work||Commissioned by||Type||Cost (£)|
|National Health Service White Paper research--advice on public attitudes towards the NHS to allow the identification of areas of greatest importance for public opinion||Press and Publicity Division||Qualitative||33,840|
|Research to develop National Drugs Helpline (NDH) campaign||Communications (COMMS)||Qualitative||19,390|
|Survey of pharmacists and GPs re: 'Get The Right Treatment' campaign||COMMS||Quantitative||16,130|
|Further research to develop NDH campaign||COMMS||Qualitative||22,850|
|Evaluation of pilot chlamydia screening programme included surveys by NOP on: Public awareness of chlamydia. Experience of professionals participating in the pilot. Experience of screening participants||Public Health Group||Quantitative||112,000|
|Benchmark survey of young people re: NDH campaign||COMMS||Quantitative||30,000|
|Further research with health professionals re: 'Get The Right Treatment' campaign||COMMS||Quantitative||50,470|
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