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Miss C. Bollinger

Dr. A. Broadhurst

Ms. P. Spinks

Mr. D. Torpy

Mr. J. Graham-White

Dr. J. Ashcroft

Mr. D. A. Black

Mr. A. Dabbs

Mr. L. J. Wilson


Dr. A. J. Blowers

Mr. G. Bye

Mrs. T. Jowell

Mrs. B. Stroll

Mr. M. Taylor

Rev. A. J. Hawes

Mrs. L. Mason

Dr. M. Barnes

Mrs. P. Entwistle

Mrs. E. Owen

Mrs. A. Samuels

Mrs. M. R. Morris

Mr. B. Smith

Mr. A. Milligan

Dispensing Doctors

Mr. Sayeed : To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what is the current average discount percentage deducted from dispensing doctors' remuneration ;

(2) when the last inquiry was held into discounts received by dispensing doctors on their drug purchases ; and what is the date of the next inquiry.

Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : In 1988-89, the latest period for which figures are available, the discount scale for dispensing doctors withheld an average of 5.7 per cent. of the price of drugs obtained by dispensing doctors. The last discount inquiry established the average discount available to dispensing doctors in 1983. No date has yet been set for a further inquiry.

Deaths on Arrival

Mr. Lofthouse : To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many deaths on arrival were delivered by the police, armed services and voluntary organisations in December 1989 for each of the health authorities operating in West Yorkshire ; and what was the cause of death ;

(2) how many deaths on arrival were delivered to the health authorities operating in West Yorkshire in December 1987 and December 1988.

Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : The available information on number of deaths on arrival at hospitals covered by West Yorkshire metropolitan ambulance service during December 1987, 1988 and 1989 is given in the following table. There have been no military ambulances deployed in West Yorkshire.

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Number of deaths on arrival                                               

               Number carried                                             

Health authoritDecember  December  December  December 1989                

              |1987     |1988     |1989     |Police   |Voluntary          


Leeds Eastern |17       |14       |20       |n/a      |n/a                

Leeds Western |7        |14       |16       |0        |0                  

Bradford      |34       |30       |29       |29       |0                  

Pontefract    |n/a      |16       |20       |0        |0                  

Airedale      |8        |3        |9        |0        |0                  

Calderdale    |16       |8        |12       |0        |0                  

Dewsbury      |10       |11       |19       |0        |0                  

Huddersfield  |13       |4        |7        |0        |0                  

Wakefield     |8        |8        |7        |0        |0                  

              |-------  |-------  |-------  |-------  |-------            

Total                   |108      |139                                    

n/a-Not available.                                                        

Details of the cause of death could be obtained only at disproportionate cost. Figures for the number of deaths on arrival can fluctuate significantly, depending on the range of cases in a particular month and if there has been any temporary increase in illness locally, for example, as a result of a flu epidemic.

Depo Provera

Mr. Alex Carlile : To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether the contraceptive drug Depo Provera is approved for use in the United Kingdom ; and if he will make a statement.

Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : Depo Provera is licensed in the United Kingdom for use in short-term contraception where an oral contraceptive is contraindicated or considered inappropriate, for wives of men undergoing vasectomy and for women being immunised against rubella ; it is also licensed for long-term use in women for whom other contraceptives are contraindicated or have caused unacceptable side-effects. In addition, the product is licensed for the treatment of endometriosis, and of certain malignant tumours.

NHS (Financial Management)

Mr. Robin Cook : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what decisions have been taken on the type of information needed for the central assessment of the financial management performance of buyers' activity under the proposals of the National Health Service and Community Care Bill.

Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : This is one of the issues addressed in our consultative paper "Framework for Information Systems : Information" ; see annex 11, section 3. Copies are in the Library. No firm decisions will be taken until completion of the consultation exercise which ends on 30 March.

Mr. Robin Cook : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the estimated total saving that it is hoped will follow the introduction of the changes in the National Health Service and Community Care Bill ; and what is the breakdown of these savings by category, including hospital closure, more rapid throughput of patients and reductions in drug expenditure.

Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : The object of our reforms of the Health Service is to improve the choice and quality of services available to NHS patients rather than to produce savings. Some of the proposals will lead to the more

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considered and cost-effective use of resources and this will enable the Health Service to increase the level of patient care it provides.

NHS Reform

Mr. Robin Cook : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the total amount spent to date on the preparation of the changes proposed in the National Health Service and Community Care Bill on (a) additional staff costs, (b) staff diverted from other work, (c) materials and (d) contracts placed with non-National Health Service bodies.

Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : Additional funds allocated to health authorities in this financial year are for the preparation of the NHS review proposals. None of these central allocations has been directed to specific clauses in the Bill.

Homes for the Elderly

Mr. Michael : To ask the Secretary of State for Health, further to his answer of 31 January, Official Report, column 231, (1) if he will give his reasons for deciding that local authorities will have to contribute more to the support of people in homes under their own management than to that of people in private homes ;

(2) what are the reasons why Government contributions to support people living in homes for the elderly are not to be calculated on the same basis, irrespective of whether the home is publicly or privately run.

Mrs. Virginia Bottomley [holding answers 9 February and 12 February 1990] : As the White Paper "Caring for People" makes clearthe Government recognise that local authorities will need adequate resources to enable them to discharge their new responsibilities from April 1991 including meeting the care costs of people in private and voluntary residential care and nursing homes. We shall therefore transfer to local authorities the resources which would otherwise have been used to finance care through social security payments to people in residential and nursing homes. The arrangements for paying social security benefits to people in local authority-managed homes will not change.

We want to ensure that local authorities encourage a mixed economy of care and make full use of the independent sector when placing people in residential settings. This will provide residents with a wider choice of accommodation and enable more rational use to be made of public resources.

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Private Security Firms

Mr. George : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many private security firms are currently hired by (a) his Department and (b) the services ; how many firms have been hired for each of the last 10 years ; and what is the value of the contracts at 1989 prices.

Mr. Archie Hamilton [holding answer 7 February 1990] : Twenty -one private security contractors are currently employed by the Ministry of Defence, at both service and civilian establishments. The total number of security contractors employed by the Ministry of Defence in each year from 1983 to 1989 is shown in the table. Figures for the years 1980 to 1982 are not held centrally.

Year     |Number           

         |of firms         


1983     |5                

1984     |9                

1985     |10               

1986     |9                

1987     |10               

1988     |17               

1989     |22               

The total values at 1989 prices of the private security contracts in each financial year from 1983-84 are as follows :

Information for earlier years is not available.

Financial    |Total value              

year         |('000s at                

             |1989 prices)             



1983-84      |345                      

1984-85      |461                      

1985-86      |750                      

1986-87      |1,329                    

1987-88      |1,549                    

1988-89      |2,033                    

1989-90      |4,418                    

Mr. George : To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what criteria are used in deciding between competing private security firms for Ministry of Defence contracts.

Mr. Archie Hamilton [holding answer 7 February 1990] : All contractors who wish to obtain MOD contracts must be listed on the defence contractors list. Companies that apply to join this list are scrutinised by MOD, for financial viability and technical competence. The references of the listed executives are also checked. Many of these companies are members of the British Security Industry Association and the International Professional Security Association, although they do not necessarily have to be members to join the defence contractors list.

When a decision is taken, by unit and command, after careful evaluation, that a guarding contract is to be placed, the contracts branch is asked to submit the details of the requirement to those companies listed on the defence contractors list. A company that wishes to be considered for tender or be awarded a contract must be on the defence contractors list.

The decision to award a contract for security guarding is based on the company's ability to meet the technical requirements of the tasks together with value for money.

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Technical compliancy is decided upon by a technical evaluation panel which includes security experts from the

unit/command/department in question. This examines all technical aspects, that is, the firm's ability to perform the tasks effectively and efficiently. All the competing firms are then placed in an order of compliancy. A financial analysis of each tender is carried out by the contracts branch alone. The contracts branch then decides, using the technical panel's information on compliancy, with which contractor it will place the contract.


Remand Prisoners

Mr. Ernie Ross : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what information he has on the number of persons who (a) were on remand and (b) had not been convicted amongst the Scottish prison population on any one day ; and how many were (i) males and (ii) females.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : The available information is set out in the table :

Average daily remand population<1> in Scottish    

penal establishments                              

during January 1990                               

          |Untried  |Convicted|Total              

                    |awaiting |on remand          



Males     |575      |144      |719                

Females   |31       |4        |35                 

          |---      |---      |---                

Total     |606      |148      |753                

<1> Provisional.                                  


Mr. Ernie Ross : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what is the current prison population in Scotland in total ; how many are (a) males and (b) females ; and what were the corresponding figures for (i) 1985, (ii) 1986, (iii) 1987, (iv) 1988 and (v) 1989.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : The available information is set out in the table :

Average daily population in Scottish penal   

establishments for the                       

month of January 1985-90                     

         |Males   |Females |<2>Total         


1985     |4,718   |144     |4,863            

1986     |5,191   |171     |5,361            

1987     |5,220   |176     |5,396            

1988     |5,115   |152     |5,267            

<1>1989  |4,826   |147     |4,973            

<1>1990  |4,489   |124     |4,612            


<2>Some of the numbers do not total due to   


Fishing Industry

Mr. John D. Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland on how many occasions in the past five years he has provided compensation or payments to the Scottish fishing industry as a result of losses caused by inclement weather ; what was the basis of such schemes ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Lang : None.

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Mr. William Ross : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many dart gun firearms certificates have been granted, how many persons now have such weapons in Scotland, broken down by police force areas ; and how many are held by (a) deer farmers and (b) others.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : Guns that are specially designed or adapted to discharge tranquillising darts are defined as prohibited weapons under the terms of section 5 of the Firearms Act 1968 and as such may not be purchased, acquired or possessed by anyone without the prior authority in writing of my right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland, and the consequent issue of a firearm certificate by the chief constable of the area in which the applicant is based.

The available information is set out in the table :

Police force                       |Total number of |Number of S.5                    

                                   |current S.5     |authorities                      

                                   |authorities     |relating to dart                 

                                   |relating to dart|guns known to                    

                                   |guns            |be issued t                      

                                                    |deer farmers                     


Central Scotland police            |5               |2                                

Dumfries and Galloway constabulary |6               |Nil                              

Fife constabulary                  |4               |1                                

Grampian police                    |17              |2                                

Lothian and Borders police         |11              |1                                

Northern constabulary              |17              |2                                

Strathclyde police                 |8               |1                                

Tayside police                     |7               |2                                

In addition one registered firearms dealer in the Fife constabulary area has been given authority under section 5 to deal specifically in tranquillising dart guns.


Employment Rehabilitation Service

Mr. Tony Lloyd : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment when Egham residential employment rehabilitation centre was established ; and for how long 24-hour medical cover has been available.

Mr. Eggar : Egham employment rehabilitation centre was officially opened in December 1943. Twenty four-hour medical cover has been available since that time.

Mr. Tony Lloyd : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment whether he has any plans to transfer the employment rehabilitation service from the Training Agency to the employment service.

Mr. Eggar : The organisation of the employment rehabilitation service is among the subjects being considered as part of my Department's internal review of services to people with disabilities. A consultative document covering the conclusions of the review will be published soon.

Mr. Tony Lloyd : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment whether he has any plans to withdraw 24-hour medical cover from Egham residential employment rehabilitation centre, and what assessment he has made of how this will affect the access to the centre for people with severe disabilities.

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Mr. Eggar : There are no plans to withdraw 24-hour medical cover from Egham employment rehabilitation centre.

Exeter Asset Centre

Mr. Tony Lloyd : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment which organisation is financing the posts of two occupational psychologists at Exeter asset centre ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Eggar : Grand Metropolitan Community Services employs two occupational psychologists based at Exeter asset centre, which is otherwise staffed by the Training Agency. This initiative for people with disabilities in the Exeter area is a welcome demonstration of the value of co-operation between the Government and the private sector.

Tobacco Products

Mr. William Ross : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many persons are employed in (a) Northern Ireland, (b) England, (c) Scotland and (d) Wales in the manufacture of tobacco products ; what percentage of the total working population that represents in each of these areas ; what is the tax revenue for their products in each country ; and what percentage of the total of tobacco producers is produced in each of the four constituent areas of the United Kingdom.

Mr. Nicholls : Information about employment in the tobacco industry by country is available only from the census of employment. The most recent figures are for September 1987. Due to confidentiality restrictions only figures for Northern Ireland and Great Britain can be given. These are as follows :

Employees in employment<1> in the tobacco industry<2>      

at September 1987                                          

                 |Number       |Percentage<3>              



Northern Ireland |2.1          |0.4                        

Great Britain    |15.0         |0.1                        

<1> Excludes the self-employed.                            

<2> Activity Heading 4290 of the Standard Industrial       

Classification 1980.                                       

<3> Percentage of all employees in employment.             

Information relating to taxation on tobacco products and tobacco products sales is not available on a regional basis. The United Kingdom figure for tax on tobacco products, including imports, is estimated at £5,800 million for the financial year 1987-88. United Kingdom home-produced tobacco product sales amounted to £6,423 million in 1987.


Mr. Vaz : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many homeworkers are employed in England and Wales and in what industries, giving the most recent figures by year for each of the past 10 years ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Nicholls [holding answer 24 January 1990] : The detailed information requested is not available. However, in 1981 a survey estimated that, excluding childminders, 230,000 people were working at home in England and Wales. Consideration is being given to whether a more recent figure can be provided.

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Mr. Loyden : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many restart interviews are planned for the coming year, how many restart follow -up interviews are planned and how many claimant adviser interviews are planned.

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Mr. Eggar [holding answer 13 February 1990] : Because the interview programme responds to the numbers and circumstances of individual unemployed people, it is not possible to predict how many interviews will be necessary.


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