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(3) how many meetings of the appointment panel took place before the decision was made to appoint a new chief executive of Preston, Chorley and South Ribble Hospital Trust. 
Mr. Hutton: At their next public meetings in late July, the boards of Chorley, South Ribble and Preston Acute Hospitals National Health Service Trusts are expected to consider seeking ministerial approval to consult on a possible merger. There has been no formal approach to Ministers, or the Department. A paper, to be taken in public session, will also include a proposed job description for the proposed new joint chief executive.
13 Jul 2001 : Column: 668W
Ms Blears: In September 1999 my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister promised that within two years everyone will be able to access national health service dentistry if and when they want it via NHS Direct. All health authorities now have in place dentistry action plans to ensure that everyone in the local area can access NHS dentistry if they want it within a reasonable time and distance.
Virginia Bottomley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many and what percentage of patients waiting for in-patient treatment have been waiting for more than one year (a) at the latest date available and (b) in May 1997 in each health authority. 
Mr. Hutton: The information requested is shown in the table. Waiting time information was not collected on a monthly basis in 1997 and so we have provided figures for the nearest date for which we have data.
In 1997 we promised to reduce waiting lists by 100,000. We have done this and today there are 125,000 fewer patients waiting for in-patient treatment than when we came into power. We are going to build on this. As part of our NHS Plan the National Health Service is working to reduce the maximum waiting time for admission to hospital from 18 months today to six months by the end of 2005. By the same date the maximum waiting time for an out-patient appointment will be reduced from over six months today to three months.
|May 2001||June 1997|
|Health authority||Number of over 12 month waiters||Percentage of over 12 month waiters||Number of over 12 month waiters||Percentage of over 12 month waiters|
|Kensington, Chelsea and Westminster||99||2.2||134||2.6|
|Redbridge and Waltham Forest||811||8.0||1,288||9.1|
|Kingston and Richmond||448||6.2||442||5.4|
|Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham||1,603||9.9||2,301||11.4|
|Merton, Sutton and Wandsworth||594||5.9||503||4.1|
|East Sussex, Brighton and Hove||1,160||6.1||650||3.2|
|Barking and Havering||521||5.1||460||4.0|
|Brent and Harrow||439||5.3||717||6.3|
|Camden and Islington||263||4.4||221||2.5|
|Ealing, Hammersmith and Hounslow||726||5.3||1,549||9.9|
|East London and the City||536||4.5||691||4.9|
|St. Helens and Knowsley||319||3.4||345||3.5|
|Salford and Trafford||849||6.7||763||5.6|
|Bury and Rochdale||258||2.8||162||1.6|
|North West Lancashire||171||1.5||262||2.0|
|North and Mid Hampshire||530||5.0||402||3.7|
|Southampton and South West Hampshire||1,011||7.3||1,252||7.7|
|South and West Devon||783||5.8||101||0.7|
|Wigan and Bolton||484||3.6||378||2.3|
|County Durham and Darlington||94||0.8||66||0.5|
|East Riding and Hull||321||2.8||475||3.7|
|Gateshead and South Tyneside||43||0.6||138||1.5|
|Newcastle and North Tyneside||112||1.5||207||2.2|
|Calderdale and Kirklees||148||1.3||142||1.2|
|Cornwall and Isles of Scilly||685||5.4||200||1.6|
|North and East Devon||689||6.2||425||3.5|
|Isle of Wight, Portsmouth and South East Hampshire||1,040||7.0||(2)||(2)|
|Barnet, Enfield and Haringey||1,040||6.7||(2)||(2)|
|Bexley, Bromley and Greenwich||839||6.2||(2)||(2)|
(2) These health authorities did not exist in 1997
QF01 quarterly returns
13 Jul 2001 : Column: 669W
13 Jul 2001 : Column: 670W
Mr. Hutton [holding answer 9 July 2001]: The table shows the data for in-patient episodes for hip and knee revisions in national health service hospitals in England, from 198990 to 19992000, the latest year for which figures are available.
|Year||All hip||Hip revision||Percentage revision||All knee||Knee revision||Percentage revision|
13 Jul 2001 : Column: 671W
Dr. Gibson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what resources have been allocated to research into the (a) causes, (b) symptoms, (c) detection and (d) treatments of tinnitus in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Hutton: The Department funds research to support policy and the delivery of effective practice in the national health service. The Department also provides NHS support funding for research commissioned by the Medical Research Council and charities that takes place in the NHS. The Department has provided or is providing such funding for five ongoing projects relating to tinnitus and 21 completed projects. Details of these projects can be found on the National Research Register which is available in the Library on CD Rom, or via the internet at www.doh.gov.uk/research/nrr/htm.
The main Government agency for research into the causes of and treatments for diseases is the MRC which receives its funding via the Department of Trade and Industry. The MRC spent £755,000 specifically on tinnitus research in 199697 and £875,000 in 199798. In 199899 the MRC spent £3.49 million on hearing research in general and £3.34 million in 19992000, some of which would be relevant to tinnitus.
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