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Supplies Authority

Mr. Milburn : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list the names of the members and chairs of (a) the NHS supplies authority and (b) the Bromley health authority on 1 April.

Mr. Sackville : The chairman of the National Health Service Supplies Authority is Sir Robin Buchanan. The non-executive members are Mrs. Alison Cook, Mr. Eric Greenhalgh, Mr. Jim Hammond, Mr. Fred Hoult and Miss Catherine McLoughlin. The executive members are Mr. Terry Hunt, Mr. Evan Sutherland, Mr. Richard Chantler, Mrs. Roxanne Sutton and Mr. Chris Uden.

The chairman of Bromley health authority is Miss Catherine McLoughlin. The non-executive members are Mr. Charles Ilsley, Ms Maureen Theobold and Dr. Robin Kirby. There are currently two vacancies. The executive members are Ms Claire Perry, Mr. Philip Lloyd, Mr. Kevin Barton, Mr. Robin Lorimer and Dr. Jackie Spilby. There is no statutory bar to the appointment of chairmen or members of other health authorities to the NHS Supplies Authority.

Medical Certificates

Mr. Blunkett : To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to her answer of 12 April, Official Report, column 78, what specific categories of medical certificates are on the defined list of medical certificates issued free of charge under GP's terms of service ; and what guidelines her Department issues to GPs for appropriate charging rates relating to categories of certificates not on that list.

Dr. Mawhinney : This information is available in schedule 9 of the National Health Service (General Medical Services) Regulations 1992, copies of which are available in the Library.

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Dental Services

Mr. Rendel : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans her Department has to exclude crown and bridgework from the treatments available to fee paying NHS patients.

Dr. Mawhinney : The Government are preparing their response to Sir Kenneth Bloomfield's report on dental services. Our proposals will be published in due course.

Mr. Rendel : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans her Department has to raise NHS dental fees in the financial year 1994-95.

Dr. Mawhinney : General dental practitioners received a 3 per cent. increase in their national health service fees from 1 April 1994 which fully implemented the Doctors and Dentists Review Body recommendation for 1994-95. The Government will, of course, keep the public expenditure implications of this increase under review throughout the year.

Mr. Rendel : To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many patients presented themselves at general medical practices in each year between 1979 and 1993 inclusive, with dental-related problems.

Dr. Mawhinney : General medical practitioners are not required to provide such information.

Children's Hospital Services

Mr. Blunkett : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans she has to publish or place in the Library reports from district health authorities due to be submitted through regional health authorities to the management directorate of the NHS excecutive by 1 May concerning the position in relation to the central guidance issued in 1991 on "Welfare of Children and Young People in Hospital", paragraph 6.3, on the specifications for the nurse staffing of children's hospital services and progress made in achieving the standards detailed therein.

Dr. Mawhinney : Responses to the survey of nursing staffing in children's wards and other hospital departments

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where children are cared for are due shortly, and will require proper aggregation and analysis. The results will be made available.

Water Pollution, Worcester

Mr. Luff : To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will conduct an inquiry into the health hazards associated with the pollution of drinking water in the Worcester area on Friday 15 April ; and if she will make a statement.

Mr. Sackville : People were advised at the time not to drink the tap water. This was a sensible precaution until an analysis could be made to determine what pollutants were present. Those subsequently detected in the drinking water were present at such low levels that no short-term or long- term health effects were anticipated. We understand that some cases of gastric upset and nausea have been reported by some local general practitioners, but it is not possible to say with certainty whether these were caused by the polluted water.

NHS Trusts

Ms Primarolo : To ask the Secretary of State for Health what was the expenditure by each individual first and second-wave trust in 1991-92 and 1992-93, as appropriate on external contract staffing and consulting services.

Dr. Mawhinney [holding answer 28 March 1994] : The information requested is shown in tables which will be placed in the Library. Figures for 1992-93 are provisional and have not yet been validated and are therefore not wholly reliable.

The figures are not comparable with those for earlier years but confirm the effectiveness of the Government's policy of encouraging overall value for money in the national health service by using alternative sources to supply a range of services. The expenditure by trusts in many cases relates to services provided within the NHS either by other trusts or health authorities. These services range from linen supplies and transport to computing services ; it also covers payments to other hospitals for services performed by their consultants and senior registrars.


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