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Sir Wilfrid Newton

Chairman

London Regional Transport

(Appointed 4 November 1993)

Mr. D. Jefferies

Chairman, National Grid Company

(Appointed 4 November 1993)

Sir Desmond Pitcher

Chairman

North West Water Group

(Appointed 26 November 1993)

Mr. P. L. Lockton CBE

Managing Director

Rolls Royce India Ltd.

(Appointed 26 October 1987)

Mr. K. A. Bray

Managing Director

GEC Asthom

(Appointed 12 January 1994)

Mr. R. Beresford

Managing Director

Mott McDonald

(Appointed 12 January 1994)

Mr. I. Robinson

Chairman and Managing Director

John Brown plc

(Appointed 28 January 1994)

Statutory Sick Pay

Mr. Ingram : To ask the President of the Board of Trade how many staff in his Department are covered by statutory sick pay.

Mr. Eggar [holding answer 8 February 1994] : Approximately 12,700 staff in the Department are eligible to receive statutory sick pay. This total includes Departmental staff on loan or secondment out of the Department.

HEALTH

Hormone Replacement Therapy

Mr. Cousins : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will publish a table showing the total expenditure on (a) hormone replacement therapy and (b) etidronate prescribed by general practitioners in each family health services authority area and NHS region for each of the last two complete years; and if she will also express this as an expenditure figure per head of the total population in each area, and also as an expenditure figure per head for women aged 45 years and over.

Dr. Mawhinney : The net ingredient cost for products used for hormone replacement therapy in each family health services authority area and national health service region for 1991 and 1992 will be placed in the Library. Information for the drug disodium etidronate cannot be supplied as it is commercially confidential.

Opticians

Dr. Spink : To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she last discussed form AG3 with opticians; what assessment she has made of form AG3 with respect to the optical section in particular; whether people likely to need this form are likely to be able readily to understand it; and what assessment she has made of whether opticians find the form to be simple and straightforward.


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Dr. Mawhinney : Planned changes to form AG3 are discussed periodically with the optical profession, most recently as part of a wider review of national health service forms and leaflets. In addition, family health services authorities provide comprehensive guidance to opticians about the national health service low-income scheme and form AG3 in order that they may give effective advice to patients. There are no grounds for believing that the form is other than simple and straightforward to use.

Advisers

Mr. Milburn : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list the advisers to her Department for each of the professions allied to medicine, stating in each case whether they are full-time appointments, for what duration the appointments have been made and the method by which the appointees were selected; and if she will outline her policy on the future of such appointments.

Mr. Sackville : The Department obtains advice in relation to the professions allied to medicine from professional staff employed within the Department and from a variety of outside expert sources, depending on the nature of the advice required. It is not our practice to publish details of individual appointments.

Electric Power Lines

Mr. Llew Smith : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what studies have been (a) sponsored or (b) undertaken within her Department on the potential risks of overhead power cables and electricity transmission stations; and in what form these have been published.

Mr. Sackville : The Department funds the National Radiological Protection Board which undertakes a programme of research into the effects on health of electromagnetic radiation. This includes sources of EM radiation such as power lines and electrical equipment. The board publishes its work in various documents, reports and other scientific forms.

Patients' Views

Mr. Bayley : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list the companies commissioned by her Department to carry out polling and market research about patients' views in the year to 1 April 1993 ; and if she will list the areas of research, the questionnaires to be used and the groups to be questioned.

Dr. Mawhinney : The Department of Health commissioned four market research projects about patients' views in the year to April 1993. These were :


P

Subject             |Questionnaires     |Groups                                 

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

Pregnancy Booklet   |Omnibus Survey     |Pregnant Mothers                       

Oral Syringe        |Group discussions/ |Parents of children                    

                    |interviews         |having treatment/                      

                                        |had treatment                          

NHS Waiting Lists   |Group discussions/ |Sample of general                      

                    |interviews         |public                                 

Health Information  |Group discussions/ |Sample of general                      

Service             |interviews         |public                                 

The companies commissioned to carry out these projects were Research Surveys of Great Britain, the Qualitative Consultancy, Counterpoint Research and Craig Ross Davidson.


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Since 1990 the Department has contributed towards the cost of the British social attitudes survey carried out by social and community planning research, which monitors trends in social attitudes towards a range of issues including health and health services.

The Department has also had questions included in the Office of Population Censuses and Surveys general household survey on general practitioner attendances, hospital in-patient stays, out-patient visits and day cases.

Care Plans

Mr. Bayley : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of national health service patients had written community care plans at the time of their discharge from hospital in 1992-93.

Mr. Bowis : This information is not available centrally.

Mentally Ill People

Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what information she has on the changes in the number of places in staffed residential care homes catering primarily for people who are mentally ill or have learning disabilities (a) in the South Birmingham health authority area, (b) in the West Midlands health authority area and (c) in England in each of the last five years divided into publicly owned, privately owned and voluntary sector owned.

Mr. Bowis : The information requested is shown in the table.


Number of places in staffed residential care homes        

catering primarily                                        

for people who are mentally ill or have learning          

disabilities by sector, at                                

31 March 1988 to 31 March 1992                            

                |1988  |1989  |1990  |1991  |1992         

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

South Birmingham district health authority<1>             

Local authority |168   |164   |190   |150   |206          

Voluntary       |109   |124   |113   |135   |152          

Private         |57    |66    |74    |72    |104          

                                                          

West Midlands regional health authority                   

Local authority |2,265 |2,275 |2,222 |2,173 |2,184        

Voluntary       |971   |1,015 |1,107 |1,276 |1,466        

Private         |1,500 |1,470 |1,674 |1,796 |1,825        

                                                          

England                                                   

Local authority |19,650|20,130|19,770|19,500|18,960       

Voluntary       |8,150 |9,490 |10,970|13,010|15,500       

Private         |13,090|15,270|17,450|19,110|20,420       

<1>On 1 April 1991 South Birmingham merged with Central   

Birmingham to produce the single district health          

authority, South Birmingham. To reflect this, the         

combined figures have been given for each year prior to   

the merger.                                               

Waiting Times

Mr. Bayley : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list for each health authority in England as at July 1993, whether it had published a guaranteed maximum waiting time for patients seeking (a) hip and knee replacements and (b) cataract removals ; and what waiting times were guaranteed by each authority that had done so.

Dr. Mawhinney : Under the patients charter, local health authorities are expected to make available detailed information on health services, including quality standards and maximum waiting times. Local standards are not


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monitored separately, but as a minimum all must meet the national guarantee that all patients waiting for a hip or knee replacement or a cataract operation are treated within 18 months.

Executive Agencies

Mr. McMaster : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list the subjects on which her Department or its predecessors formerly answered parliamentary questions but which are now referred by her to an executive agency.

Mr. Sackville : Next steps agency chief executives are usually asked to reply to parliamentary questions about day-to-day operational matters of their agency and on subjects for which they have delegated responsibility, as set out in their agency's framework document.

Whooping Cough

Dr. Spink : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what information she has about any recent change in the incidence of whooping cough ; and if she will make a statement.

Mr. Sackville : Although the current winter is one in the epidemic cycle when increases would have been expected in whooping cough notifications, they have remained at exceptionally low levels. Provisional notifications in 1993 were 4,030 against 11,663 in 1989, the comparable year in the epidemic cycle. These very low notifications reflect the very high immunisation coverage of 93 per cent. at November 1993.

Dr. Spink : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what measures she has taken to ensure that all those children who were not vaccinated for whooping cough but who, following the change in medical advice, might be considered suitable for vaccination, have been contacted and given the opportunity to receive the vaccination.

Mr. Sackville : It is for individual general practitioners to identify children who in the past did not complete their whooping cough immunisation.

Dr. Spink : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what directions she has issued, following the change in medical advice given three years ago on the use of the whooping cough vaccination for children with a family history of fits.

Mr. Sackville : Advice on whooping cough immunisation was issued to all doctors in the United Kingdom in July 1992 in the memorandum "Immunisation against Infectious Disease", copies of which are available in the Library. This provides guidance for doctors, practice nurses and health visitors on the use of the vaccine in children with a variety of family or personal histories.

Orthodontic Treatment

Ms. Janet Anderson : To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many practising orthodontists work in the NHS in each health authority area in England.

Dr. Mawhinney : Any dentist who has the necessary facilities, experience or expertise may provide orthodontic treatment.


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Ms Janet Anderson : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list the average waiting time for orthodontic treatment for each health authority area in England.

Dr. Mawhinney : A full comparison of average in-patient and day case waiting times for the orthodontic specialty is not possible because health authorities may record orthodontic treatment under different categories, for example, out-patient activity or general surgery.

Benzene

Mr. Alan W. Williams : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will make a statement on her Department's assessment of the health hazard posed by benzene vapour releases from petrol.

Mr. Sackville : I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave the hon. Member for Sheffield, Hillsborough (Ms Jackson) on 26 January at columns 297-98 .

Leeds Healthcare

Mr. Hinchliffe : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps she has taken to ensure that the circumstances identified in the health service commissioner's report on Leeds healthcare failure to provide long- term health care to a patient seriously incapacitated after a stroke are not repeated elsewhere; and if she will make a statement.

Mr. Bowis : As part of the new community care arrangements we have required health and local authorities to agree their respective responsibilities for long-term care. This should be done in the light of their assessment of the best way to provide a comprehensive service to meet the needs of their local populations. We have also required them to agree co-ordinated hospital discharge arrangements. In addition, the chief executive of the National Health Service Management Executive wrote to all health authority managers, trust chief executives and unit general managers on 20 January 1994, EL(94)8, to remind them of the importance of having in place explicit and comprehensive discharge procedures which should be reviewed regularly. Copies of the letter are available in the Library.

Birth Statistics

Mr. Peter Bottomley : To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many live births there were in 1993.

Mr. Sackville : A provisional estimate of the number of live births occurring in England and Wales in 1993 is 674,000.

West Midlands Patient Transport Service

Ms Walley : To ask the Secretary of State for Health when the West Midlands health authority received a request for arbitration concerning the patient transport service; and from whom.

Mr. Sackville : This is a matter for West Midlands Health. The hon. Member may wish to contact Mr. Bryan Baker, chairman of that authority, for details.

Pharmaceutical Industry

Mr. Dunn : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the prospects of the pharmaceutical industry.


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Dr. Mawhinney : The pharmaceutical industry has a long record of success in the United Kingdom. The industry employs about 80,000 people in the United Kingdom and has a positive balance of trade--estimated at about £1.5 billion for 1993, the second largest contribution to the United Kingdom balance of trade. We expect the industry to continue to be successful in the years to come.

James Paget Hospital, Gorleston

Mr. David Porter : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will make a statement about the guarantees she has given on the presumption that following the dismantling of the Great Yarmouth and Waveney district health authority on 1 April, the James Paget hospital, Gorleston, shall be deemed the local hospital for the people of north Suffolk ; and what qualifications to these guarantees she now expects to make.

Mr. Sackville : The East Anglian regional health authority has given a comprehensive package of guarantees to the people of Great Yarmouth and Waveney. Ministers would expect the guarantees to be honoured or to have explained, in clear terms, why that was not possible. Copies of the guarantees will be placed in the Library.

Parliamentary Questions

Mr. Rooker : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list those topics on which it is not her practice to answer parliamentary questions ; and if she will list any recent changes in the practice of her Department.

Mr. Sackville : There has been no change from the practice of this and previous Administrations, as described on page 292 of the current edition of "Erskine May".

SCOTLAND

Mr. Douglas Mason

Mr. McMaster : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland in what way Mr. Douglas Mason has been commissioned, employed or retained by his Department, or any agency, organisation, company or body appointed or funded by his Department, at any time during the last three years ; what were his functions, responsibilities and duties ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Lang : Mr. Douglas Mason has been a member of Glenrothes development corporation board since 1 January 1985, when he was appointed as a local authority member ; he was last reappointed on 1 January 1992 and his current period of office is expected to run until 31December 1995 when the corporation is due to be wound up. The duties involved are attendance at the corporation's meetings, which are normally held once a month, and any such tasks as may from time to time be allotted to individual members. The responsibilities of the development corporation are laid out in section 3 of the New Towns (Scotland) Act 1968 and the constitution and proceedings of development corporations covered by schedule 2 of the Act. Appointees to a development corporation also receive a copy of the code of conduct for board members. I have arranged for a copy of that code of conduct to be placed in the Library of the House. Mr. Mason has not been commissioned, employed or retained otherwise by my


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Department or any of its agencies. I am not aware if he has been so engaged by any other body funded by my Department.

Ministerial Travel

Mr. Matthew Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what was the (a) budgeted and (b) actual expenditure by his Department on (1) internal and (2) overseas travel by the Secretary of State in 1990-91 after 28 November 1990, 1991-92, 1992-93 and so far in 1993-94.

Mr. Lang : My ministerial colleagues and I have a single travel budget so I am unable to provide a budgetary figure. Details of actual expenditure from the use of public transport for the period 28 November 1990 until 31January 1994 are as follows :


                                  |Internal|Overseas         

                                  |(£)     |(£)              

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

28 November 1990 to 31 March 1991 |3,180   |375              

1 April 1991 to 31 March 1992     |8,066   |5,636            

1 April 1992 to 31 March 1993     |6,495   |5,045            

1 April 1993 to 31 January 1994   |5,144   |11,406           

Electricity Interconnector

Mr. Foulkes : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what were the terms of reference of the public inquiry on the electricity interconnector with England.

Mr. Stewart : The application by ScottishPower to upgrade the existing 275 KV transmission line between Strathaven and Harker to 400 KV was referred to a public inquiry in 1991. This was conducted by a reporter from the Scottish Office inquiry reporters unit. His minute of appointment required him to report to my right hon. Friend on the placing above ground of transmission lines in certain defined areas for the reason that the proprietors had refused to give consent to the placing thereover of the said lines and to consider the objections to the erection of the said lines.

Children in Hospital

Mrs. Fyfe : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what assessment he has made of the number of children at present inappropriately placed in long-stay hospitals.

Mr. Stewart : Excluding those on respite care, there are currently 21 children aged 15 or under who are long-term residents in NHS facilities, of which only five are located in a hospital. It is for individual health boards, as purchasers of health care, together with the other care agencies to assess whether continuing in-patient care is appropriate to an individual child's needs.

Mrs. Fyfe : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what target date he has set for the discharge of those children with disabilities who are being inappropriately cared for, at present, in long-stay hospitals ; and what progress has been made since the publication of the White Paper, "Scotland's Children", on finding appropriate accommodation and support for such children.

Mr. Stewart : We have established that there is only a small number of children under 16 who are long stay


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residents in national health service facilities. Many have complex needs and we will be discussing with health boards and social work departments the best form of facilities for them.

Renfrew Health Care Trust

Mr. McMaster : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will list the responsibilities of the Renfrew Health Care Trust ; if he will list the members of the trust ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Stewart : Renfrewshire Healthcare was established as an NHS trust on 6 December 1993 and as a "shadow" trust has the limited functions of entering into NHS contracts and other contracts including contracts of employment, acquiring or disposing of land and other property, and doing such other things as are necessary to prepare the Trust for full operation from 1 April 1994. From that date the Trust's functions will be to own and manage Dykebar, Hawkhead, Bridge of Weir, Merchiston, Johnstone and Ravenscraig hospitals and any establishments, facilities and support services associated with those hospitals. In so doing the Trust will be responsible for achieving such financial objectives as are set for it by the Secretary of State.

The members of the Trust are :

Chairman

Dr. John Moffat

Non-executive Directors

Mr. Basil Baird

Mrs. Margaret Foggie

Mrs. Jean Goldie

Mr. John Hornibrook

Mr. David McNiven

Chief Executive

Mr. Ken Brewer

Medical Director

Dr. John McCurley

Director of Finance

Mrs. Lyn Hollis

Director of Personnel

Mr. Malcolm Dickinson

Director of Nursing

Still to be appointed.


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