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Column 605

"Provided that we press ahead quickly, it should be possible for the railway to be completed by around the turn of the decade." 23 November 1993

PQ by hon. Member for Chislehurst (Mr. Sims)

Q : "To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he now expects construction of the Channel Tunnel Fast Link to commence." A : "Construction is expected to begin shortly after the enactment of a hybrid Bill, which the Government aim to have ready by autumn 1994 ; the Bill's introduction will depend upon the parliamentary timetable and the private sector's views."

Deregulation

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will publish a list of all organisations with which his Department has held meetings regarding the deregulation initiative as it affects his Department, together with the dates on which such meetings were held and the persons present.

Mr. Norris : It would not be possible to publish such a list. The Department holds a large number of meetings about legislation with a wide range of people. Deregulation is a central plank of the Government's legislation policy. It is a consideration in all meetings about legislation.

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) if he will publish a list of all material sent to his Department by the communications and transport deregulation task force, together with the dates on which such material was received by his Department ; (2) if he will publish a list of all meetings held between Ministers or officials in his Department and the communications and transport deregulation task force, the dates on which each meeting took place and those who attended each meeting.

Mr. Norris : The Department has had a large number of dealings, both oral and written, with the task force. The task force's recommendations, along with those of all the other task forces, will be published shortly.

Roads

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will publish a list of all potential DBFO-design build finance and operate--road projects which have been identified by his Department ; and when construction of each project is planned to begin.

Mr. Key : We shall announce the first DBFO schemes as soon as possible.

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will publish a full list of all organisations with which Ministers or officials have held meetings to identify potential DBFO road projects, the dates on which each meeting took place ; and what future meetings are planned.

Mr. Key : We have held a number of meetings with construction companies and others to help to identify potential DBFO schemes. The meetings have been conducted on a confidential basis.


Column 606

Airport Safety

Mr. Nigel Griffiths : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what steps he is taking to act on the conclusions of the air accident investigation branch that airport safety is threatened by confusion between his Department, the Civil Aviation Authority and the Health and Safety Executive over responsibility for vehicle safety and staff safety training ;

(2) what action he is taking to ensure that a mechanism is in place at every airport to take immediate action on staff complaints about serviceable vehicles ; and that vehicles used at airports are checked regularly for roadworthiness and have appropriate vehicle test certificates ;

(3) what steps he is taking to ensure that all staff at airports have proper safety training ;

(4) what response he has made to the report of the air accident investigations branch published on 7 January on the fatal accident affecting a member of the ground staff at Edinburgh airport, and what action he is taking to ensure that its recommendations are implemented at every airport without delay.

Mr. Norris : These questions relate to a tragic accident at Edinburgh airport on 11 March 1993 in which a tractor driver was killed by the propeller of a stationary aircraft. The air accidents investigation branch has made safety recommendations to the CAA, BAA plc and the Airport Operators Association--AOA. Appropriate action has been taken, or is in hand, by those organisations.

The CAA initiated an aerodrome apron safety management working group with members drawn from BAA, AOA, the British Air Transport Association and the British Airline Pilots Association, with the following terms of reference :

i. To determine the best practice in safety management and procedures and their application in apron safety management. ii. To establish model safety management standards and procedures from which airport operators can prepare the systems and procedures for their airports.

iii. To determine the most appropriate measures to effect audit control over the safety management systems and procedures at airport.

The working group is meeting on a monthly basis to expedite its progress. The CAA is also in active discussion with the Health and Safety Executive.

BAA plc advises me that it has remedies in place or in progress relating to the detailed points emerging from this accident and these will apply equally to all its airports. It took action where possible at the earliest moment. The AOA has already brought these matters to the attention of its members.

M2 Widening

Dame Peggy Fenner : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the increase in the cost of widening the M2 between junctions 1 and 4 ; and if he will reconsider the proposal and the necessity for the project.

Mr. Key : Since the scheme for widening the M2 between junctions 1 and 4 entered the roads programme, the cost has increased from £43 million to £156 million. This increase has been mainly due to an increase in standard from dual three lanes to dual four lanes over most of the length, the addition of a second Medway bridge, strengthening of the existing bridge, major remodelling at


Column 607

junctions 2 and 3, and further structures. The scheme has also been extended 1.5 km to the west of junction 1 to include a short length of the A2.

The M2 widening scheme is part of the current road programme review.

EDUCATION

Pupil Costs

Mr. Robert Banks : To ask the Secretary of State for Education what is the cost per pupil at (a) Nun Monkton school near York and (b) Green Hammerton school.

Mr. Forth : For the financial year 1993-94, the budget shares allocated to Nun Monkton Church of England primary school and Green Hammerton Church of England primary school under North Yorkshire local education authority's scheme for the local management of schools amounted to £3,446 per pupil and £1,779 per pupil respectively.

Primary Education

Mr. David Atkinson : To ask the Secretary of State for Education if he will list local education authorities in order of spending per primary pupil with the actual amount spent per pupil for the last available year ; and what spending per primary pupil represented as a percentage of spending per secondary pupil in each case.

Mr. Robin Squire : The information requested is shown in the table for 1991-92, the latest year for which figures are available.


Cost per pupil 1991-92                                                    

                       |Nursery and     |Percentage of                    

                       |Primary         |spending on                      

                       |£               |secondary pupils                 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

City of Westminster    |2,902           |89.5                             

Corporation of London  |2,609           |n/a                              

Islington              |2,328           |79.2                             

Kensington and Chelsea |2,287           |71.5                             

Tower Hamlets          |2,253           |76.5                             

Wandsworth             |2,212           |67.5                             

Hackney                |2,176           |77.7                             

Lambeth                |2,083           |70.0                             

Hammersmith and Fulham |2,047           |74.7                             

Camden                 |1,943           |79.9                             

Haringey               |1,927           |72.7                             

Isles of Scilly        |1,849           |44.4                             

Greenwich              |1,830           |79.7                             

Southwark              |1,828           |74.3                             

Ealing                 |1,754           |61.9                             

Richmond upon Thames   |1,738           |82.2                             

Merton                 |1,723           |65.7                             

Lewisham               |1,717           |72.3                             

Barnet                 |1,674           |72.0                             

Newham                 |1,671           |67.7                             

Brent                  |1,670           |67.0                             

Harrow                 |1,661           |70.0                             

Hillingdon             |1,661           |63.3                             

Bradford               |1,652           |92.0                             

Newcastle upon Tyne    |1,646           |79.7                             

Leeds                  |1,642           |83.0                             

Enfield                |1,636           |70.5                             

Oxfordshire            |1,635           |77.6                             

Waltham Forest         |1,625           |62.0                             

Nottinghamshire        |1,625           |65.2                             

Croydon                |1,593           |67.1                             

Oldham                 |1,582           |70.0                             

Calderdale             |1,570           |78.1                             

Hounslow               |1,567           |72.5                             

Gateshead              |1,562           |73.8                             

Wolverhampton          |1,554           |66.0                             

Barking                |1,550           |68.8                             

Kingston upon Thames   |1,543           |62.4                             

Sandwell               |1,540           |67.6                             

Lancashire             |1,535           |69.0                             

Bedfordshire           |1,511           |74.2                             

Berkshire              |1,506           |69.8                             

Leicestershire         |1,498           |66.5                             

Shropshire             |1,497           |63.7                             

Wakefield              |1,494           |70.7                             

Redbridge              |1,489           |64.5                             

Isle of Wight          |1,488           |76.9                             

Hertfordshire          |1,482           |66.3                             

Northumberland         |1,477           |75.2                             

Sheffield              |1,476           |67.7                             

Hereford and Worcester |1,473           |75.1                             

Norfolk                |1,465           |69.2                             

Rotherham              |1,465           |68.1                             

Cumbria                |1,460           |67.1                             

Surrey                 |1,460           |66.3                             

Hampshire              |1,457           |68.4                             

Derbyshire             |1,452           |66.0                             

Bromley                |1,443           |59.1                             

North Yorkshire        |1,442           |67.0                             

Sutton                 |1,437           |66.5                             

South Tyneside         |1,435           |70.3                             

Avon                   |1,435           |70.1                             

Knowsley               |1,432           |62.3                             

Sunderland             |1,427           |69.7                             

Gloucestershire        |1,425           |81.1                             

Kirklees               |1,423           |69.2                             

Humberside             |1,422           |68.9                             

East Sussex            |1,421           |70.4                             

Manchester             |1,421           |62.2                             

Tameside               |1,419           |67.6                             

Cambridgeshire         |1,417           |70.0                             

Dudley                 |1,411           |66.3                             

Dorset                 |1,410           |73.4                             

Wiltshire              |1,408           |72.3                             

Cornwall               |1,403           |71.7                             

North Tyneside         |1,402           |67.6                             

Walsall                |1,400           |66.4                             

Staffordshire          |1,397           |68.3                             

Havering               |1,396           |61.9                             

Devon                  |1,394           |69.6                             

Durham                 |1,386           |68.6                             

Liverpool              |1,386           |58.8                             

Bolton                 |1,380           |64.8                             

Barnsley               |1,374           |67.3                             

Bexley                 |1,371           |66.6                             

Birmingham             |1,370           |63.7                             

Cheshire               |1,364           |64.7                             

Buckinghamshire        |1,358           |64.8                             

Northamptonshire       |1,355           |68.8                             

Solihull               |1,352           |63.6                             

Somerset               |1,349           |69.1                             

Lincolnshire           |1,348           |64.8                             

St. Helens             |1,341           |63.7                             

Warwickshire           |1,338           |64.0                             

West Sussex            |1,338           |64.2                             

Wirral                 |1,325           |62.7                             

Doncaster              |1,323           |66.2                             

Stockport              |1,319           |61.8                             

Sefton                 |1,313           |65.1                             

Rochdale               |1,310           |61.4                             

Bury                   |1,302           |68.6                             

Coventry               |1,300           |61.4                             

Salford                |1,299           |59.3                             

Trafford               |1,281           |60.8                             

Cleveland              |1,271           |60.2                             

Kent                   |1,263           |60.9                             

Essex                  |1,261           |55.5                             

Wigan                  |1,257           |54.9                             

Suffolk                |1,250           |73.6                             

Notes to the table:                                                       

1. Figures are in outturn prices and are derived from local education     

authorities' returns of their net institutional expenditure to the        

Department of the Environment and of their pupil numbers to the           

Department of Education.                                                  

2. Net institutional expenditure covers the direct costs in schools of    

salaries and wages, premises and certain supplies and services. It does   

not include the costs of school meals, home to school transport, LEA      

central administration, and financing costs of capital expenditure.       

Figures include unspent balances held by schools at the year end under    

local management of schools schemes.                                      

3. "N/A" indicates not applicable; Corporation of London LEA has no       

secondary schools.                                                        

Mr. Tim Brighouse

Ms Abbott : To ask the Secretary of State for Education what assistance is being given from public funds or by involvement of Government personnel to him in his defence against the legal action launched by Mr. Tim Brighouse in relation to remarks made by him about Mr. Brighouse in October 1993 ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Patten : This is being treated as a personal, not a Government, matter.

Higher Education (Drop-out Rate)

Mr. Robert Ainsworth : To ask the Secretary of State for Education what research has been commissioned by his Department on the drop-out rate from higher education both before and after the introduction of student loans ; and what account this research takes of drop-out rates in different socio-economic groups, and parental income brackets.

Mr. Boswell : Higher education drop-out rates are published in the Department's annual report. Table 26 in the last report--Cm 2210--showed that drop-out rates have remained broadly steady over the period from 1982- 83 to 1990-91. The figure for 1991-92 is 17 per cent.

Information about the socio-economic group or parental income bracket of students who drop out is not collected centrally. No specific research has been commissioned on drop-out rates before and after the introduction of student loans.

Grant-maintained Schools

Dr. Wright : To ask the Secretary of State for Education in which local education authority areas grant-maintained schools now educate (a) more than 10 per cent. but less than 75 per cent. of primary or secondary pupils, (b) more than 75 per cent. of primary or secondary pupils and (c) less than 10 per cent. of primary or secondary pupils ; and if he will give the current percentage figures for each area.

Mr. Robin Squire : The estimated proportions of maintained school pupils attending self-governing--grant-maintained--schools in each local education authority area in January 1994 are as follows.


Table A                                             

Percentage of primary pupils in self-governing      

schools by local                                    

education authority area                            

                                |Per cent.          

----------------------------------------------------

i. 10 per cent. to 74 per cent.                     

Essex                           |11.6               

Hillingdon                      |13.3               

Lincolnshire                    |11.4               

                                                    

ii. Less than 10 per cent.                          

Avon                            |0.0                

Barking                         |0.0                

Barnet                          |3.3                

Barnsley                        |0.0                

Bedfordshire                    |1.5                

Berkshire                       |3.7                

Bexley                          |2.4                

Birmingham                      |0.4                

Bolton                          |1.3                

Bradford                        |0.5                

Brent                           |2.2                

Bromley                         |4.6                

Buckinghamshire                 |3.5                

Bury                            |1.3                

Calderdale                      |0.4                

Cambrideshire                   |3.3                

Camden                          |0.0                

Cheshire                        |0.5                

Cleveland                       |0.0                

Cornwall                        |0.0                

Corporation of London           |0.0                

Coventry                        |0.0                

Croydon                         |3.2                

Cumbria                         |3.8                

Derbyshire                      |2.0                

Devon                           |0.4                

Doncaster                       |0.0                

Dorset                          |0.9                

Dudley                          |1.4                

Durham                          |0.0                

Ealing                          |4.4                

East Sussex                     |0.0                

Enfield                         |0.6                

Gateshead                       |0.0                

Gloucestershire                 |3.2                

Greenwich                       |0.0                

Hackney                         |0.0                

Hammersmith and Fulham          |0.0                

Hampshire                       |3.0                

Haringey                        |0.0                

Harrow                          |0.0                

Havering                        |0.0                

Hereford and Worcester          |0.0                

Hertfordshire                   |1.0                

Hounslow                        |0.0                

Humberside                      |0.3                

Isle of Wight                   |0.0                

Isles of Scilly                 |0.0                

Islington                       |0.0                

Kensington and Chelsea          |5.2                

Kent                            |3.3                

Kingston-upon-Thames            |1.8                

Kirklees                        |0.0                

Knowsley                        |0.0                

Lambeth                         |6.6                

Lancashire                      |0.2                

Leeds                           |0.1                

Leicestershire                  |0.0                

Lewisham                        |1.8                

Liverpool                       |0.0                

Manchester                      |0.0                

Merton                          |0.0                

Newcastle-upon-Tyne             |0.0                

Newham                          |0.0                

Norfolk                         |4.0                

North Tyneside                  |0.0                

North Yorkshire                 |0.0                

Northamptonshire                |6.1                

Northumberland                  |0.0                

Nottinghamshire                 |0.0                

Oldham                          |0.0                

Oxfordshire                     |0.2                

Redbridge                       |0.0                

Richmond-upon-Thames            |0.0                

Rochdale                        |4.0                

Rotherham                       |0.0                

Salford                         |0.0                

Sandwell                        |0.0                

Sefton                          |0.0                

Sheffield                       |1.2                

Shropshire                      |0.9                

Solihull                        |2.3                

Somerset                        |0.7                

South Tyneside                  |0.0                

Southwark                       |5.2                

St. Helens                      |0.0                

Staffordshire                   |0.0                

Stockport                       |0.0                

Suffolk                         |0.0                

Sunderland                      |0.0                

Surrey                          |2.4                

Sutton                          |6.2                

Tameside                        |0.0                

Tower Hamlets                   |0.0                

Trafford                        |0.0                

Wakefield                       |0.0                

Walsall                         |2.0                

Waltham Forest                  |0.0                

Wandsworth                      |3.0                

Warwickshire                    |0.0                

West Sussex                     |0.0                

Westminster                     |0.0                

Wigan                           |0.0                

Wiltshire                       |3.3                

Wirral                          |0.0                

Wolverhampton                   |0.0                


Table B                                                                                

Percentage of secondary pupils in self-governing schools by local                      

education authority area                                                               

                             |Percentage                                               

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

i.                           |75 per cent. and above                                   

Hillingdon                   |83.6                                                     

                                                                                       

ii.                          |10 per cent. to 74 per cent.                             

Barnet                       |48.6                                                     

Bedfordshire                 |19.6                                                     

Berkshire                    |16.0                                                     

Bexley                       |19.6                                                     

Birmingham                   |21.8                                                     

Bolton                       |16.6                                                     

Bradford                     |11.1                                                     

Brent                        |65.8                                                     

Bromley                      |63.4                                                     

Buckinghamshire              |25.3                                                     

Calderdale                   |34.1                                                     

Cambridgeshire               |37.5                                                     

Camden                       |22.3                                                     

Croydon                      |25.5                                                     

Cumbria                      |26.0                                                     

Derbyshire                   |26.8                                                     

Dorset                       |21.8                                                     

Dudley                       |25.4                                                     

Ealing                       |44.6                                                     

Enfield                      |32.1                                                     

Essex                        |63.6                                                     

Gloucestershire              |60.8                                                     

Hammersmith and Fulham       |20.6                                                     

Hampshire                    |19.2                                                     

Havering                     |25.7                                                     

Hertfordshire                |26.6                                                     

Hounslow                     |15.0                                                     

Kensington and Chelsea       |19.6                                                     

Kent                         |45.6                                                     

Kingston-upon-Thames         |37.6                                                     

Lambeth                      |53.0                                                     

Lincolnshire                 |44.2                                                     

Norfolk                      |21.4                                                     

Northamptonshire             |20.7                                                     

Shropshire                   |14.3                                                     

Southwark                    |30.3                                                     

Surrey                       |25.5                                                     

Sutton                       |59.6                                                     

Tameside                     |18.1                                                     

Trafford                     |25.4                                                     

Walsall                      |29.0                                                     

Waltham Forest               |17.3                                                     

Wandsworth                   |72.8                                                     

Warwickshire                 |16.6                                                     

Wiltshire                    |32.4                                                     

Wolverhampton                |14.9                                                     

                                                                                       

iii.                         |Less than 10 per cent.                                   

Avon                         |2.9                                                      

Barking                      |0.0                                                      

Barnsley                     |0.0                                                      

Bury                         |0.0                                                      

Cheshire                     |3.8                                                      

Cleveland                    |0.0                                                      

Cornwall                     |0.0                                                      

Corporation of London        |0.0                                                      

Coventry                     |0.0                                                      

Devon                        |8.0                                                      

Doncaster                    |0.0                                                      

Durham                       |0.0                                                      

East Sussex                  |0.0                                                      

Gateshead                    |0.0                                                      

Greenwich                    |0.0                                                      

Hackney                      |0.0                                                      

Haringey                     |0.0                                                      

Harrow                       |6.1                                                      

Hereford and Worcester       |7.6                                                      

Humberside                   |0.0                                                      

Isle of Wight                |0.0                                                      

Isles of Scilly              |0.0                                                      

Islington                    |0.0                                                      

Kirklees                     |5.1                                                      

Knowsley                     |8.0                                                      

Lancashire                   |8.0                                                      

Leeds                        |2.6                                                      

Leicestershire               |5.5                                                      

Lewisham                     |0.0                                                      

Liverpool                    |7.6                                                      

Manchester                   |0.0                                                      

Merton                       |0.0                                                      

Newcastle-upon-Tyne          |0.0                                                      

Newham                       |4.1                                                      

North Tyneside               |0.0                                                      

North Yorkshire              |0.0                                                      

Northumberland               |2.2                                                      

Nottinghamshire              |2.9                                                      

Oldham                       |0.0                                                      

Oxfordshire                  |0.0                                                      

Redbridge                    |7.4                                                      

Richmond-upon-Thames         |0.0                                                      

Rochdale                     |8.3                                                      

Rotherham                    |0.0                                                      

Salford                      |3.6                                                      

Sandwell                     |3.7                                                      

Sefton                       |0.0                                                      

Sheffield                    |7.1                                                      

Solihull                     |0.0                                                      

Somerset                     |1.4                                                      

South Tyneside               |0.0                                                      

St. Helens                   |0.0                                                      

Staffordshire                |6.3                                                      

Stockport                    |0.0                                                      

Suffolk                      |0.0                                                      

Sunderland                   |0.0                                                      

Tower Hamlets                |7.8                                                      

Wakefield                    |0.0                                                      

West Sussex                  |0.0                                                      

Westminster                  |0.0                                                      

Wigan                        |0.0                                                      

Wirral                       |9.8                                                      

Footnotes to tables:                                                                   

1. The percentages in the tables are based on provisional data derived                 

from the DFE's January 1993 schools census.                                            

2. The self-governing schools included in these calculations are those                 

operating by 5 January 1994.                                                           

Dr. Wright : To ask the Secretary of State for Education what materials have been distributed to schools during the last year to promote grant-maintained status ; and what is the cost of the preparation, production and distribution of this material.

Mr. Robin Squire : The Department has not distributed any materials promoting grant-maintained status. It does, however, provide booklets containing factual information to help parents and governors make informed decisions about whether grant-maintained status is right for their schools and to tell them how to acquire it. A total of 2.9 million such booklets have been distributed over the last five years, mainly to schools. Expenditure on these in the first nine months of this financial year included £164,000 for production and £8,000 for their distribution. The identification of all preparation costs would entail disproportionate expense.

FE College Corporations

Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Education if he will introduce a compulsory register of members' interests for members of the governing bodies of further education college corporations.

Mr. Boswell : My right hon. Friend sees no need for such a register. The instruments of government for further education corporations provide that, except with the approval in writing of the Secretary of State, no member shall take or hold any interest in any property held or used for the purposes of the institution. Further, a member who has any financial interest in the supply of work or goods for the institution, any contract or proposed contract concerning the institution, or any other matter relating to the institution, and is present at the meeting of the governing body at which such a matter is to be considered, is required to disclose his or her interest and is precluded from taking part in the discussion or vote on the matter.

Examination Papers (Access)

Mr. Hanson : To ask the Secretary of State for Education if he will make it his policy to allow parents and schools access to marked external examination papers on written request.

Mr. Robin Squire : The GCE and GCSE examination bodies are independent of Government. It is for them to decide whether to alow external access to marked examination papers. Where candidates are dissatisfied with their results they may appeal through their school or college to the relevant examination body and, if necessary, to the Independent Appeals Authority for School Examinations.

Outdoor Activity Centres

Mr. Jamieson : To ask the Secretary of State for Education what is his Department's estimate of the number of commercial outdoor activity centres currently operating in England and Wales.

Mr. Forth : Precise figures are not available, and the exact number of centres is likely to vary from time to time. It is estimated that about 3,000 are currently in operation.


Column 614

Mr. Jamieson : To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many outdoor activity centres will be inspected by the Health and Safety Executive over the next two years.

Mr. Forth : As part of the special programme of inspections announced by my right hon. Friend on 11 November 1993, the Health and Safety Executive are planning to inspect about 100 centres over the next two years.

HEALTH

NHS Trusts

Mr. Cousins : To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many orders have been made using the powers of the National Health Service and Community Care Act 1990, section 5(10) ; which trusts have been given such additional powers ; and what was the nature of those additional powers.

Mr. Sackville : None.

Data Protection

Mr. Cohen : To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether he will make arrangements for the Data Protection Registrar to inspect relevant contracts with suppliers of information technology services that involve the use of personal data held by his Department in order to check whether all appropriate arrangements in relation to the Data Protection Act 1984 have been made, and whether such contracts make provisions for the registrar to make random inspections in order to check the suppliers' compliance with the eighth data protection principle.

Mr. Sackville : The Data Protection Registrar has a wide range of powers, under the Data Protection Act 1984, to ensure that all individuals and organisations holding personal data on computer systems are registered and observe the data protection principles as required by the Act. When information technology services are contracted out by a data user, the contractor and the user will be subject to the application of the data protection principles, and to the registrar's powers to promote compliance with them, as provided for in the Act. It is for the registrar to decide how he will use his powers under the Act, and I do not consider that any further arrangements are necessary for him to discharge his duties effectively.

Mental Health

Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Health where information assembled by the Centre for Mental Health Services Development about the costs of current mental health services in the nine authorities considered to be providing a comprehensive community-based service is available in published form.

Mr. Bowis : I am arranging for a copy of the report to be placed in the Library.

Surgical Dressings

Mr. Blunkett : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list NHS expenditure in the latest available year on surgical dressings and bandages, broken down into country of manufacture.


Column 615

Mr. Sackville : This information is not available centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Mr. Peter Savage

Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will order an independent inquiry into the death of Mr. Peter Savage in Doncaster royal infirmary.

Mr. Sackville : As a result of Mr. Savage's death, the trust asked Mr. Philip Gill, a former district coroner in west Yorkshire, to undertake an independent inquiry into the procedures followed by Doncaster royal infirmary for admission, investigation and treatment of confused patients. His report was published in December 1993, copies of which will be placed in the Library.

Alder Hey Hospital

Mr. Loyden : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the current waiting time for children needing orthopaedic treatment at the Alder Hey hospital in Liverpool.

Dr. Mawhinney : Alder Hey hospital is part of the Royal Liverpool childrens hospital national health service trust. Information on this trust's waiting times for in-patient and day case treatment is given in "Hospital Waiting List Statistics : England", which is published twice yearly. The latest published figures are for September 1993 and copies are available in the Library.

Population Statistics

Mr. William Powell : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list the population for each county in the United Kingdom, according to the census taken in each year in (a) 1971, (b) 1981 and (c) 1991 ; and what are the absolute and percentage differences between the 1971 and 1991 figures.

Mr. Sackville : Census figures for each county of England and Wales are published in the report "1991 Census, Historical Tables, Great Britain", copies of which are available in the Library. However, these census figures are affected by people missed from the census and by other factors. The most satisfactory comparisons are those based on the Registrar General's mid-year population estimates of resident population. These figures will be placed in the Library. Figures for Scotland and Northern Ireland are matters for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland and my right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.

Medicines Control Agency

Mr. Hargreaves : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will make a statement concerning the funding arrangements of the Medicines Control Agency listing all external agencies or companies that supply funds.

Mr. Sackville : The Medicines Control agency--MCA--has, since it was established in 1989, been funded by fees from applicants for and holders of product licences, wholesale dealers licences and manufacturers licences. The MCA also receives fees for inspections of manufacturers and wholesale dealers premises. Ministers review MCA


Column 616

fee levels annually and widespread consultation takes place on the Government's proposals for the following year. The proposed fee levels, amended as necessary in the light of consultation, are then laid before Parliament for approval. Over 2,700 companies and external agencies paid fees to the MCA in 1992-93, a list of them will be placed in the Library.

NHS Trusts

Mr. Cousins : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will place in the Library a copy of the orders made under sections 5 to 11 of the National Health Service and Community Care Act 1990 for the NHS trusts in the Northern region.

Mr. Sackville : Copies of orders made under section 8 of the National Health Service and Community Care Act 1990 will be placed in the Library. All other orders made under sections 5 to 11 for NHS trusts in the northern region have been made under statutory instrument and are therefore already in the Library.

Press Office

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what was the number of staff and the cost of the Department's press office for each year since 1988.

Mr. Sackville : The number of staff employed in the main press office for each year since 1989 is as follows :


        |Number       

----------------------

1989-90 |14           

1990-91 |15           

1991-92 |14           

1992-93 |15           

1993-94 |14           

The cost of the press office and staffing figures for 1988-89 are not available in the form requested.

Workload Supervision

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what routine supervision is exercised by her Department over hospital and health authority workload and caseload performances in England.

Dr. Mawhinney : The National Health Service Management Executive-- NHSME--holds regional health authorities--RHAs--to account for their performance on the basis of agreed corporate contracts. Corporate contracts reflect both national and regional priorities and purchasing plans agreed by district health authorities, family health services authorities and, where appropriate, general practitioner fundholders. Performance is monitored through formal

submissions--corporate contracts and quarterly returns--and continuous reviews between the NHSME's performance management teams and regional managers. This review process culminates in annual meetings held between the chief executive of the NHSME and each regional general manager and chairman. Issues outside corporate contracts are also raised with RHAs as appropriate to ensure performance is satisfactory.


Column 617

Market Testing

Mr. McAllion : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will publish for each service that has been market tested in her Department in 1993 (a) the cost of the testing process, including consultancy costs, (b) the result of the test, (c) the name of the successful contractor, (d) the value and duration of the contract, (e) the number of staff involved, (f) estimated annual cost reductions and (g) whether the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 1981 were deemed to apply.

Mr. Sackville : The Department is currently analysing the outcome of the 1992-93 competing for quality programme with the efficiency unit in the Cabinet Office. Much of the information requested will, once it has been finalised, be published in aggregate form in the "Citizens Charter Second Report". On an individual contract basis, much of the information is commercially confidential.

West Midlands Regional Health Authority

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if the £300, 000 public funds loaned by Mr. M. Davies while director of finance to West Midlands regional health authority to the company FIP has been recovered ; and what interest on that sum was paid by FIP

Dr. Mawhinney : The loan to the financial information project is being repaid to West Midlands regional health authority by instalments on a quarterly basis. The first payment of £50,000 is due on 28 February. Interest on the loan is being charged in line with the health service prices index.

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans she has to instigate prosecutions for corruption in respect of the affairs of the West Midlands regional health authority as discussed in the 57th report from the Committee of Public Accounts of Session 1992-93, HC 485.

Dr. Mawhinney : It is for West Midlands regional health authority and the police to determine what action needs to be taken over alleged corruption in the affairs of the authority.

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much was paid to Mr. M. Davies when he resigned from his post as director of finance of West Midlands regional health authority ; how much of this was performance related ; and what were the reasons for these payments.

Dr. Mawhinney : When Mr. Davies resigned from West Midlands regional health authority, he had a contractual entitlement to six months notice, and was paid two months extension of contract for untaken leave, a total of £36,702. He also received £6,222 for cumulative performance- related pay.

Influenza Vaccine

Ms Abbott : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made as to the adequacy of supply of inflenza vaccine in the London area ; what steps she is taking to ensure adequate supplies ; and if she will make a statement.

Mr. Sackville : Information about the supply of influenza vaccine to particular areas is not available


Column 618

centrally. I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave my hon. Friend the Member for Waveney (Mr. Porter) on 17 January at columns 391-92, for details on the general supply of vaccine.

Child Resistant Closures

Ms Jowell : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps she proposes to take to speed the pharmaceutical industry's development of a child resistant closure for liquid medicines.

Mr. Sackville : Some liquid medicines are already in child resistant containers. There are, however, technical difficulties in developing a closure which is effective for all types of liquid medicine containers and which could be adopted across the pharamaceutical industry and by pharmacists. The Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain and representatives of the pharmaceutical industry are in discussions to help speed up the development process.

Mental Illness Grant

Mr. Nigel Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what funding will be available for the mental illness specific grant for the year 1994-95 ; and what are the planning figures for the following years ;

(2) what plans she has to extend the mental illness specific grant beyond 1995.

Mr. Bowis : On 28 December 1993, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Health announced that the mental illness specific grant will be increased to£36 million in 1994-95, supporting expenditure of over £51 million, and that it is planned that the grant will continue for at least another three years.

The 1993 public expenditure settlement provided for planning figures of £37.262 million and £38.262 million for 1995-96 and 1996-97 respectively. The planning figures are subject to discussion in future public expenditure rounds.

AIDS

Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what support the Government will be giving to London boroughs for their work in HIV and AIDS in 1994-95 and beyond ; and what conclusions she has arrived at in reviewing this assistance.

Mr. Sackville : Funds will again be available in 1994-95 through the AIDS support grant scheme as a contribution towards local authorities' expenditure on HIV and AIDS. There are planning figures for the two subsequent years, which are subject to discussion in future public expenditure rounds.

The grant has made a valuable contribution to fostering joint co-operation in supporting people with HIV or AIDS and to limiting the spread of the virus.

Young People, Doncaster

Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) 16-year-olds and (b) 17-year-olds there were in the Doncaster area in each year since 1988.

Mr. Sackville : The population estimates requested, relating to Doncaster metropolitan district, are shown in the table.


Column 619


Estimated mid-year resident 

population of Doncaster:    

Persons aged 16 to 17       

Thousands                   

Year   |Age 16|Age 17       

----------------------------

1988   |4.1   |4.3          

1989   |3.9   |4.1          

1990   |3.7   |3.9          

1991   |3.6   |3.8          

1992   |3.6   |3.6          

Source:                     

Population Estimates Unit,  

Office of Populaton         

Censuses and Surveys.       

Abortion

Ms Primarolo : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of terminations of pregnancy in (a) the North Devon health authority and (b) the East Berkshire health authority were carried out under the NHS in the last year for which figures are available ; what would be the additional cost if the North Devon percentage applied nationwide ; and what steps she is taking to establish reasons for geographical differences on the proportion of terminations of pregnancy carried out under the NHS.

Mr. Sackville : The proportion of terminations of pregnancies for the two health authorities concerned for 1992 is as follows :


                  |<1>Total     |<1>NHS funded|Per cent.                  

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

East Berkshire HA |1,157        |120          |10.4                       

North Devon HA    |307          |292          |95.1                       

<1> These statistics are based on the (Office of Population Censuses and  

Surveys Abortion Monitor (AB 94/2) due to be published on 20 February     

1994.                                                                     

The cost of a termination of pregnancy in the national health service varies according to factors such as gestation and length of stay. It is not therefore possible to provide any meaningful estimate of the additional cost if the North Devon percentage applied nationwide. Arrangements for purchasing abortion services under the NHS are the responsibility of individual district health authorities in the light of their assessment of local needs and priorities.


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