Previous Section Home Page

Mr. Freeman : The information requested is given in the table.

|c|Estimated number of hip          

replacement operations and other|c| 

|c|anthroplasty of hip (810-811)<1> 

performed on in-patients in NHS|c|  

|c|non-psychiatric hospitals|c|     

                  |1986 |1980       


North West Thames |2,400|1,770      

North East Thames |3,300|2,690      

South East Thames |3,600|3,100      

South West Thames |3,300|2,370      

<1> Classification of surgical      

operations (CSO)-3rd revision.      

Because of NHS restructuring in     

1982, the regional figures are not  

strictly comparable.                


Mr. Teddy Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to his reply of 16 February to the hon. Member for Southend, East, when his Department first became aware of the health hazards related to the new strain of salmonella ; and what steps were taken to advise the general public and categories at particular risk.

Column 614

Mr. Kenneth Clarke : First indications of a problem with salmonella enteritidis PT4 and eggs emerged towards the end of 1987, but sufficient epidemiological evidence to justify public health action did not become available until the summer of 1988. At that time evidence suggested that the problem arose from the consumption of raw eggs or from uncooked dishes containing raw eggs--such as mayonnaise. On 29 July 1988 my Department issued a letter to National Health Service caterers on raw eggs. On 26 August 1988 my Department issued a public press notice advising consumers to avoid raw eggs or home-made dishes containing uncooked eggs. This advice was circulated to chief environmental health officers of local authorities on 2 September 1988 and to catering and hotel organisations on 5 September 1988. Chief environmental health officers of the local authorities were asked to give publicity to this advice.

Subsequently it became apparent from further epidemiological evidence that there was also risk of infection from the consumption of lightly cooked eggs. On 21 November 1988 we issued further public advice. A press release by my Department gave some reassurance that, in the context of the consumption of some 30 million eggs a day in the United Kingdom, the risk to any individual was very small, but that a small number of outbreaks had been associated with the consumption of lightly cooked eggs.

The Chief Medical Officer published further advice on 5 December 1988. He repeated his earlier advice not to eat raw eggs. As far as lightly cooked eggs were concerned, he said the risk of harm to a healthy individual was small but it was advisable for vulnerable groups such as the elderly, the sick, babies and pregnant women to eat only eggs which had been cooked until the white and the yolk were solid. I answered a private notice question in the House on 5 December at columns 19-24 which also set out that advice to the public.

The Government also took steps through a series of newspaper advertisements from 16 to 18 December 1988 to reiterate the advice of the Chief Medical Officer and to ensure that the facts on eggs were known to everyone.

Emergency Services

Mr. Bowis : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the performance of hospital accident and emergency services at recent rail and air disasters.

Mr. Freeman : I am delighted to have this opportunity to put on record my appreciation of all that was done by both the hospital accident and emergency services and the ambulance services during the recent rail and air disasters. They coped magnificently and performed to the highest standard. Many more lives might have been lost were it not for the way in which they responded to those emergencies.

Hospitals (Capital Assets)

Ms. Harman : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will publish the value of the capital assets of each of the major acute hospitals with more than 250 beds.

Mr. Kenneth Clarke [holding answer 9 February 1989] : This information is not at present available. Establishing the current value of NHS assets will be one of the first steps in introducing the capital charging arrangements outlined in the White Paper "Working for Patients".

Column 615

Breast Milk

Mr. Fearn : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he has knowledge of any research or evidence on passage of listeria from the bloodstream into breast milk.

Mr. Kenneth Clarke [holding answer 20 February 1989] : As with many other organisms or substances carried in the bloodstream, listeria has been shown to pass from the bloodstream into breast milk. My Department is not aware of any current research.

Cook-Chill Food

Mr. Battle : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proposals are being considered by the Leeds western health authority to introduce cook-chill catering into hospitals in that area ; and what consultations have taken place concerning this proposal.

Mr. Kenneth Clarke : At its meeting on 24 March 1988 the Yorkshire regional health authority resolved to adopt in principle the findings of the report received from its regional catering strategy steering group "Regional Catering Strategy for the 1990s". Paragraph 31(a) of that report recommended a regional catering strategy for catering based on the use of cook-chill technology.

Column 616

Leeds western health authority, along with other district health authorities in the region, will be considering the implications of this policy at local level. The hon. Member may therefore wish to contact the chairman of Leeds western health authority to establish what proposals, if any, he has under consideration.

Hospital Waiting Lists (Gloucester)

64. Mr. French : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the current waiting list for operations in the Gloucester health authority area.

Mr. Mellor : At 31 March 1988 there were 4,005 patients on the in- patient waiting list for surgical specialities in Gloucester district health authority.


Mr. Jessel : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will provide figures to show changes in the proportion of smokers and non- smokers and the average daily number of cigarette expenditure per person and per household as a proportion of income in the last 30 years.

Mr. Mellor [holding answer 20 February 1989] : The information available centrally is given in the table.

Column 615

         Percentage of   Cigarettes smokeTobacco expendi

         population who sday (16+ years) percentage of h

         cigarettes (16+ years)  expenditure            

        |Males  |Females|Males  |Females                


1972    |52     |41     |17.1   |12.4   |4.5            

1974    |51     |41     |17.9   |13.4   |4.3            

1976    |46     |38     |18.4   |14.4   |4.2            

1978    |45     |37     |18.1   |14.4   |3.9            

1980    |42     |37     |17.7   |14.6   |3.5            

1982    |38     |33     |17.3   |14.0   |3.6            

1984    |36     |32     |16.4   |13.7   |3.4            

1986    |35     |31     |16.4   |13.9   |3.2            


The figures on smoking exclude cigar and pipe smoking.  

In 1986 9 per cent. of men smoked a pipe or cigars.     

Source: General Household Survey.                       

Farmed Food

Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he will reply to the questions asked by the hon. Member for Caerphilly on 18 January concerning the possible contamination of farmed food.

Column 616

Mr. Kenneth Clarke : I replied to the hon. Member yesterday.


  Home Page