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Written Answers to Questions

Monday 1 May 1995

HEALTH

Tacrine

Mrs. Beckett: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will indicate her reasons for not licensing the drug Tacrine for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease; and if she will list the countries in Europe where it is licensed.      [19901]

Mr. Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what progress has been made towards the processing of Cognex (Tacrine) by the United Kingdom.     [20319]

Mr. Sackville: The Committee on Safety of Medicines (CSM), has provisionally concluded that, on grounds relating to safety and efficacy, they are unable to advise the licensing authority that Tacrine should be licensed at this stage. Under the United Kingdom licensing procedures, applicants for drug licences have extensive rights of appeal against the provisional conclusions of the CSM. The company promoting Tacrine is exercising these rights and the CSM will consider its appeal at the hearing.

The European Union's Committee for Proprietary Medicinal Products has also concluded that Tacrine has not met the requirements for licensing under article 5 of directive 65/65/EEC. The majority of the European Union member states have decided to abide by this decision. Tacrine is licensed in France and Sweden.

NHS Chairman

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what was the total sum paid to chairmen of (a) NHS authorities and (b) NHS trusts as salaries and emoluments in each year since 1985.     [20676]

Mr. Malone: The available information is shown in the tables.


Remuneration paid to NHS        

authorities chairmen (£000)     

1988-89 |1989-90|1990-91        

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

3,183   |3,281  |5,878          


Emoluments paid to NHS  

authorities chairmen (  

£000)                   

1992-93 |1993-94        

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

4,851   |4,204          

Source:                 

Annual accounts of      

regional, district and  

the London postgraduate 

teaching hospitals (    

SHAs) and family        

practitioner committees 

and family health       

services authorities.   

Notes:                  

1. Figures for 1993-94  

are provisional.        

2. Figures are NOT      

comparable between the  

tables. Before 1991-92  

the sum included gross  

salaries and pension    

contributions only.     

From 1991-92 it         

includes gross salaries,

 monetary value of      

benefits                

in kind, expenses       

allowances (where       

taxable), compensation  

for loss of office and  

chairman's fees.        

3. Figures for 1985-86, 

1986-87, 1987-88 and    

1991-92 could be        

provided only at        

disproportionate cost.  

Sums paid to NHS Trust Chairman

For 1991 92 to 1993 94 this information was published in the annual accounts of each trust, but for 1991 92 and 1992 93 this information was not collected centrally. For 1993 94 I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave him on 16 February at column 808 . From 1994 95 onwards this information will be collected centrally and also published in the annual accounts of each trust.

Medical (Professional Performance) Bill

Mr. Spearing: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the basis of her calculations that the initial annual cost of retraining doctors consequent to her proposed Medical Act will be £530,000; and on what number of doctors, whose performance is likely to be judged seriously deficient it is based.     [21062]

Mr. Malone: The explanatory and financial memorandum of the Medical (Professional Performance) Bill states that any increase in the General Medical Council retention fee--to cover the cost to the GMC of the new performance procedures--and the costs of remedial training undertaken by doctors to improve their standard of professional performance are expected to increase national health service expenditure by up to £530,000 a year. Of this, the estimated retraining costs are £280,000. The GMC estimates that 100 to 150 doctors a year might be subject to assessment under the new procedures, of whom 50 to 75 might be subject to remedial training or sanction.

The costs of retraining would vary widely, according to individual need, and would not necessarily be borne by the NHS. The figure of £280,000 was a central estimate after considering a range of possible scenarios; it is very small in proportion to the funds already available to hospital doctors and general practitioners who maintain their professional standards through continuing education.

Dental Services

Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the average waiting time for a person to become accepted as a patient of an NHS dentist in each health district in England.     [21228]

Mr. Malone: Information about waiting times for patients to be accepted by dentists in the general dental service is not available centrally. Any unregistered patient who needs urgent treatment should seek the help of their family health services authority.

Hospitality

Mrs. Beckett: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what was the Department of Health's hospitality budget in each of the last five years.     [21748]

Mr. Tony Banks: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much was spent on official hospitality by her Department in 1994 95.     [21207]

Mr. Sackville: Expenditure on hospitality during 1994 95, including basic refreshments for meetings of expert advisory groups and working groups and for meetings with representatives of other Government


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Departments, voluntary organisations and public bodies is shown in the table. For details of previous years' expenditure I refer the right hon. Member and the hon. Member to the reply I gave the hon. Member of Truro (Mr. Taylor) on 1 November 1994 at columns 1073-74 .


               |1994-95          

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

(a) Department |229,779          

(b) Agencies   |32,451           

               |--------         

Total          |262,230          

Departmental Management

Mrs. Beckett: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what are the departmental administration costs in each year since and including 1989 90; what is the planned expenditure on departmental administration increase in 1995 96 and 1996 97; and if she will make a statement on the planned increase in spending in 1996 97 over 1995 96;     [21751]

(2) if she will make a statement on the planned change in Department of Health staff in 1996 97.      [21742]

Mr. Sackville: Departmental administration costs from 1989 90 to 1994 95, and the planned expenditure for 1995 96 and 1996 97 are shown in the table. The figures for 1994 95 are an estimate. In the three years to 31 March 1997, the staff costs and numbers of the Department as it stood on 1 April 1994 are planned to decrease by 21 per cent. Separately, in 1996 97, staff numbers will increase as a result of the replacement, subject to legislation, of regional health authorities with regional offices of the National Health Service Executive, in respect of which there will be a transfer of £63 million from hospital, community health and related services current expenditure to departmental administration.


Year    |Costs          

        |(£000s)        

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

1989-90 |174,681        

1990-91 |216,785        

1991-92 |240,267        

1992-93 |276,280        

1993-94 |250,775        

1994-95 |260,264        

1995-96 |238,145        

1996-97 |291,222        

Doctors

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate she has made of the proportion of doctors in the United Kingdom who speak (a) Urdu and (b) Punjabi; and if she will make a statement.     [20923]

Mr. Malone: No such estimate has been made as this information is not available centrally.

Nurses

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate she has made of the proportion of nurses working in the United Kingdom who speak (a) Urdu and (b) Punjabi; and if she will make a statement.     [20924]


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Mr. Sackville: No such estimate has been made as this information is not available centrally.

Conflicts of Interest

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health on how many occasions during the last five years (a) civil servants and (b) special advisers in her Department or its agencies have declared conflicts of interest; and how many instructions have been issued about their retention, disposal or management.     [21386]

Mr. Sackville: For the Department and agencies of which we are responsible any conflict of interest involving a civil servant would have been dealt with in accordance with the established guidance. Records of the number of cases are not held centrally. In the last five years, no special advisers have declared a conflict of interest.

NHS Authorities

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will publish an up-to-date list by region of all the chairs and non-executive members of each health authority, indicating the gender and occupation of each individual.     [21358]

Mr. Malone: The appointment of non-executive members to district health authorities and family health services authorities is a matter for the regional health authority. Information on chairmen and non-executive members of regional health authorities and chairmen of district health authorities and family health services authorities will be placed in the Library.

Long-term Care

Mrs. Roche: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what action her Department is taking to ensure that health authorities abide by the requirements of HSG(95)8, NHS responsibilities for long-term care.     [21273]

Mr. Bowis: As part of the implementation of HSG(95)8 all health authorities are required to draw up and publish local policies and eligibility criteria. The National Health Service Executive will monitor these closely to ensure that they meet the national framework of requirements set out in HSG(95)8.

NHS Provider Units

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what has been the total annual cost improvement programme in the national health service provider units in each of the last four years.     [21330]

Mr. Sackville: This information is not available centrally.

Private Patients

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much income has been received from treating private patients in each national health service hospital in the last year (a) as a cost figure and (b) as a proportion of that hospital's income.     [21334]

Mr. Sackville: Details of the private income of national health service trusts for 1993 94 and the percentage of total income that private patient income represents will be placed in the Library.


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Consultancy

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will estimate the cost of employing consultants in connection with market- testing programmes in which her Department has been engaged since their inception.      [21369]

Mr. Sackville: Since publication of the White Paper, "Competing for Quality", in November 1991, until 31 March 1995, the latest date for which figures are held, the total cost of consultants employed in connection with the market testing programmes of the Department and its agencies is £1,488,000.

Continuing Care

Mrs. Roche: To ask the Secretary for Health what action she proposes to take to ensure that New River health authority complies with the requirements of HSG(95)8 in relation to its decision to reduce its 1995 96 continuing care contract with Hornsey Central hospital in respect of the number of occupied bed days.     [21272]

Mr. Bowis: HSG(95)8 states that until policies and eligibility criteria for continuing care have been agreed health authorities should not proceed with any plans to reduce continuing care services unless those plans are covered by existing agreements with local authorities. New River health authority has reduced its contract for continuing care beds at Hornsey Central hospital in line with bed usage in 1994 95. They are discussing with the local social services department how the savings can be re-invested in other continuing care services. I have asked the chairman of New River health authority to let me have details of their reinvestment plans once they have been agreed with the local authority.

Appointments

Mr. Ainger: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many civil service appointments were made to administrative assistant and administrative officer posts in her Department and the agencies for which she is accountable in each quarter from September 1993 until April 1995.     [21767]

Mr. Sackville: The following civil service appointments were made to administrative assistant and administrative officer posts in my Department and its agencies.


Quarter                 |Administrative|Administrative               

                        |Officer       |Assistant                    

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

September-December 1993 |2             |1                            

January-March 1994      |2             |-                            

April-June 1994         |-             |-                            

July-September 1994     |1             |2                            

October-December 1994   |2             |-                            

January-March 1995      |2             |2                            

All appointments were on fixed term contracts except for 1 AO and    

2AAs.                                                                

Mr. Rushton

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what details her Department has received about the


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severance payment made to Mr. Rushton, the former chief executive of the Avon ambulance trust.     [21674]

Mr. Malone: None. National health service trusts can authorise severance payments without reference to the Department of Health. They are required to report termination settlements to the NHS Executive quarterly. The payment to Mr. Rushton was made in April 1995 and will be reported in the return for the quarter to 30 June 1995.

Infertility Treatment

Mr. Byers: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans she has to encourage the extension of infertility treatment on the NHS; and if she will institute an assessment of the effectiveness of the various forms of infertility treatment present funded by the NHS.     [21841]

Mr. Sackville: Decisions about the resources to be made available for infertility services must be left to individual health authorities as they are in the best position to determine priorities in the light of local needs and circumstances.

An assessment of the effectiveness of infertility treatments is already available in:

The Effective Health Care Bulletin on "The Management of Subfertility" (August 1992), published for the NHS Management Executive by a consortium of Leeds and York universities and the research unit of the Royal College of Physicians.

Copies of the publication are available in the Library.

Special Hospitals

Mr. Alex Carlile: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list special hospitals currently operating in shadow trust form which are applying internal market principles; and if she will make a statement.     [22041]

Mr. Bowis: No.

Efficiency Ratings

Mrs. Beckett: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list the efficiency rating of the English hospital and community service and those of each EEC country in each available year between 1978 79 and 1992 93.      [19797]

Mr. Malone [holding answer 21 April 1995]: Improvements in hospital and community health services efficiency are estimated by comparing the rate of increase in activity with the increase in expenditure. Between 1978 79 and 1992 93, HCHS cost weighted activity in England increased by 39.8 per cent. and HCHC expenditure, adjusted for movements in HCHS pay and prices, by 15.3 per cent. This implies an increase in efficiency of some 21 per cent. over the period. Data on the annual changes in activity and expenditure are in the table. Estimates from these data of efficiency gains for individual years over this period are not regarded as reliable.

Directly comparable data are not available for health services in other European Union countries. However such evidence as is available indicates that unit costs have


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generally risen over the last decade. Information on these health services is available in "OECD Health Systems", Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development 1993.


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HCHS cost weighted activity index     

         HCHS cost   Expenditure      

         weighted actadjusted for     

         index       changes in       

         percentage  input unit cost  

         increase ovepercentage increa

         previous                     

         year 1978-79over previous    

         100         year 1978-79 = 10

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

1978-79 |100.0|-    |100.0|-          

1979-80 |100.2|0.2  |100.0|0.0        

1980-81 |105.9|5.8  |100.8|0.8        

1981-82 |107.8|1.8  |103.1|2.3        

1982-83 |107.2|-0.5 |103.2|0.1        

1983-84 |113.2|5.5  |104.0|0.8        

1984-85 |116.5|3.0  |104.1|0.1        

1985-86 |119.7|2.7  |104.3|0.2        

1986-87 |121.4|1.5  |104.6|0.3        

1987-88 |123.4|1.6  |105.4|0.8        

1988-89 |124.5|0.9  |106.2|0.7        

1989-90 |127.2|2.2  |108.0|1.7        

1990-91 |128.9|1.3  |109.0|1.0        

1991-92 |135.6|5.2  |111.9|2.6        

1992-93 |139.8|3.1  |115.3|3.1        

Notes:                                

1. The cost weighted activity index   

provides a broad measure of the       

overall growth in HCHS activity, in   

which the contribution of the         

individual components are weighted by 

their costs.                          

2. Estimates of efficiency derived    

from these figures do not take        

account of the changing cost of a     

unit of output over time-for example  

due to demographic changes in case    

mix and the costs and benefits of     

medical advance. It is not possible   

to measure the effect of the last two 

components. However, demographic      

change has meant that the average     

cost per person treated has increased,

 particularly because of the growing  

number of very elderly people, who    

tend to require more expensive care.  

ATTORNEY GENERAL

Conflicts of Interest

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Attorney-General on how many occasions during the last five years (a) civil servants and (b) special advisers in his Department or its agencies have declared conflicts of interests; and how many instructions have been issued about their retention, disposal or management.     [21388]

The Attorney-General: Comprehensive records are not held centrally for civil servants in the departments and agency for which I am responsible. The requirement to declare conflicts of interest is contained in the "Staff Handbook" of each department and agency. There have been no special advisers in those departments or agency during the last five years.

Market Testing

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Attorney-General if he will estimate the cost of employing consultants in connection


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with market-testing programmes in which his Department has been engaged since their inception.     [21371]

The Attorney-General: The cost of employing such consultants in the departments for which I am responsible is £104,815.

Appointments

Mr. Ainger: To ask the Attorney-General how many civil service appointments were made to administrative assistant and administrative officer posts in his Department and the agencies for which he is accountable in each quarter from September 1993 until April 1995.      [21765]

The Attorney-General: The information for the departments for which I am responsible--the legal secretariat to the Law Offices, the Crown Prosecution Service, the Treasury Solicitor's Department, the Serious Fraud Office and the Government Property Lawyers' agency--is given in the table. The figures cover permanent and casual staff but not inter-departmental transfers.


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                            LSLO<1> CPS     T.SOL.  SFO<2>  GPL        

                           |AO |AA |AO |AA |AO |AA |AO |AA |AO |AA     

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

1 October-31 December 1993 |-  |-  |43 |85 |4  |0  |5  |-  |3  |0      

1 January-31 March 1994    |-  |-  |71 |151|6  |0  |12 |-  |3  |0      

1 April-30 June 1994       |-  |-  |42 |123|1  |0  |4  |-  |3  |0      

1 July-30 September 1994   |-  |-  |38 |144|1  |1  |7  |-  |1  |0      

1 October-31 December 1994 |-  |-  |30 |101|3  |0  |3  |-  |1  |0      

1 January-31 March 1995    |-  |-  |33 |80 |1  |0  |2  |-  |1  |0      

<1> Administrative grade staff in LSLO are on loan from other          

departments.                                                           

<2> SFO do not employ administrative assistants.                       

SCOTLAND

Executive Agencies

Mr. Macdonald: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will give the number and location of Historic Scotland, Registers of Scotland, the Scottish Agricultural Science Agency, the Scottish Fisheries Protection Agency, the Scottish Office Pensions Agency, the Scottish Prisons Service, the Scottish Record Office and the Student Awards Agency for Scotland offices closed and the numbers of jobs lost or transferred as a result of agency work transferring from Scotland to the rest of the United Kingdom over the past five years; and if he will list the number and location of offices opened and jobs gained in Scotland as the result of agency work transferring to Scotland from the rest of the United Kingdom over the same period.     [20167]

Mr. Lang: I have asked the chief executives of the agencies for which my Department is responsible, to write to the hon. Member. Letter from Graeme N. Munro to Mr. Calum Macdonald, dated 1 May 1995:

The Secretary of State for Scotland has asked me to reply to your recent question about changes in jobs and offices resulting from cross-border transfers of agency work over the past five years. As you will appreciate Historic Scotland has always been concerned only with the built heritage in Scotland since its establishment as an executive agency in 1991. It maintains no offices or posts outwith Scotland.

The only addition to our functions since 1991 was the transfer of responsibility for marine archaeology in Scotland from the Department of Transport in 1992. This did not involve transfer of posts or offices and the extra responsibility has been absorbed as enhanced productivity by existing staff in Historic Scotland. I hope this information is helpful to you.

Letter from Andrew MacLeod to Mr. Calum Macdonald, dated 1 May 1995:

I have been asked to respond for the Scottish Fisheries Protection Agency to your Parliamentary Question to the Secretary of State for Scotland on agency work transferred between Scotland and the rest of the United Kingdom.

The Agency has not closed any offices or made any reduction in the number of jobs as a result of transfers of work over the past 5 years. No offices or jobs have been transferred from the rest of the United Kingdom to Scotland in this period.

Letter from Norman MacLeod to Mr. Calum Macdonald, dated 1 May 1995:

The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your Question about offices closed or opened and jobs lost or gained as a result of transfers of work from or to Scotland, so far as the Scottish Office Pensions Agency is concerned.

All of the Agency's operations are carried out from the above address and no work has transferred from it to other locations in the UK over the past 5 years. Equally, no work has transferred to it from locations elsewhere in the UK.

No offices or jobs have therefore been lost or gained. Letter from Alan W. Ramase to Mr. Calum Macdonald, dated 1 May 1995:

I have been asked to reply, in relation to Registers of Scotland Executive Agency, to your question to the Secretary of State for Scotland about jobs lost/gained and offices closed/opened through transfers of Agency work between Scotland and the rest of the United Kingdom.

No Agency work has been transferred to or transferred from the rest of the United Kingdom. The Agency has therefore not gained or lost any jobs nor opened or closed any offices for this reason.


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Letter from Patrick Cadell to Ms. Calum Macdonald, dated 1 May 1995:

I am writing in response to your question to the Secretary of State for Scotland about the number and location of offices closed and the number of jobs lost or transferred as a result of agency work transferring from Scotland to the rest of the United Kingdom over the past 5 years.

The Scottish Record Office (SRO), which became an executive agency from 1 April 1993, maintains the national archives of Scotland and it would be entirely inappropriate for Scotland's written heritage to be housed anywhere other than Scotland. None of our repositories has been closed nor have any jobs been lost or transferred as a result of any of the SRO's work being transferred outwith Scotland.

Although a few jobs have had to be created as a result of a general increase in workload, none of that increase can be attributed to work being transferred to Scotland from other parts of the United Kingdom.

I hope that this information is of use to you.

Letter from E. W. Frizzell to Mr. Calum Macdonald, dated 1 May 1995:

I refer to your Question to the Secretary of State for Scotland about changes in Agencies caused by transfers of work to or from Scotland. I am replying so far as the Scottish Prison Service is concerned.

No offices have been opened or closed or jobs lost or gained in the Scottish Prison Service as a result of transfer of work within the United Kingdom.

Letter from K. MacRea to Mr. Calum Macdonald, dated 1 May 1995: I refer to the Parliamentary Question which you tabled to the Secretary of State for Scotland seeking information on transfers of work between Scotland and the rest of the United Kingdom in relation to various Executive Agencies.

I have been asked to reply in respect of the Student Awards Agency for Scotland. There have been no transfers of work, or related changes in staff or offices, since the Agency was established in April 1994.

I trust this is the information you were seeking.

Letter from Dr. R. K. M. Hay to Mr. Calum Macdonald, dated 1 May 1995:

The Secretary of State has asked me to reply on behalf of the Scottish Agricultural Science Agency (SASA) to your recent questions regarding the number of jobs lost or transferred as a result of agency work transferring from Scotland to the rest of the United Kingdom over the past five years and the number of jobs gained in Scotland as a result of agency work transferring to Scotland from the rest of the United Kingdom over the same period.

These questions are not applicable to SASA.

European Regional Development Fund

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to his answer of 15 December, Official Report , column 757 , if he will list those projects in privatised companies which have received European regional development funding since privatisation indicating (a) the level of funding and (b) the dates when it was received.     [20576]

Mr. Kynoch: I refer the hon. Member to the reply given today by my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade.

Public Bodies

Dr. Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will list the executive non-departmental public


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bodies sponsored by his Department which are subject (a) to investigation by the Parliamentary Commissioner, (b) scrutiny by the Audit Commission, (c) scrutiny by the National Audit Office, (d) statutory provisions for open government, (e) performance indicators and (f) provisions under the citizens charter.     [20663]

Mr. Lang [holding answer 25 April 1995]: The information requested is as follows: (a) Crofters Commission, new town development corporations, Red Deer Commission, Scottish Arts Council, Scottish Homes, Scottish Legal Aid board, Scottish Medical Practices committee, Scottish Natural Heritage, Scottish Sports Council, Scottish tourist board:

(b) None, as the Audit Commission does not operate in Scotland. Its Scottish equivalent is the Accounts Commission for Scotland, which scrutinises the accounts of the seven Scottish river purification boards;

(c) this information is listed in the Cabinet Office publication "Public Bodies 1994"; a copy of which is available in the Library of the House;

(d) none, although following publication last year of the "Code of Best Practice for Board Members of Public Bodies", the Scottish version of which was published in September 1994 and a copy of which is in the Library of the House, all executive NDPBs have been asked to comply with all reasonable requests for information from Parliament, users of services and individual citizens.

(e) Performance indicators are part of the management statement or corporate plan for each NDPB;

(f) the citizens charter applies to all public services, including NDPBs. NDPBs serving the public, including those sponsored by my Department, are therefore expected to meet the charter standards.


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