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Summary Case Costs

Ms Roseanna Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what instructions he issued regarding the timing of the comparative research into summary case costs in different jurisdictions, referred to in paragraph 6.12.3 of the White Paper "Crime and Punishment"; who conducted the research; when the research was completed; and when he proposes to publish it. [38442]

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton [holding answer 19 July 1996]: The research was conducted by Ms T. Goriely of TPR Social and Legal Research and Professor A. Paterson and Mr. C. Tata of the University of Strathclyde law school. The contract required the first draft of the research report to be provided to the funding bodies--that is, the Scottish Office, the Lord Chancellor's Department and the Scottish Legal Aid board--by 30 April 1996. The draft report was provided on time and it is intended that, following further work, a short research findings summary will be issued towards the end of 1996.

HEALTH

Mentally Handicapped Children

Mr. Thurnham: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the number of mentally handicapped children currently in NHS hospital care in (a) the north-west and (b) nationally. [36262]

Mr. Bowis: The table gives the number of children resident in national health service hospitals and units and under the care of a mental handicap consultant at 31 March 1995.

Age at 31 March 1995(45)
0-1415-19
North Western and Mersey(46)1020
England120190

The figures are estimates based on a combination of data from the hospital episode statistics system and data obtained directly from regional offices (and the former RHAs) and are rounded to the nearest 10.

(45) Estimates of those in hospital under the care of a learning disability consultant.

(46) All health authorities under North Western and Mersey regional health authorities including South Cumbria merged to form North West regional office.


Junior Doctors

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will ensure that junior doctors gain clinical experience at specialist locations and district general

22 Jul 1996 : Column: 112

hospitals with particular reference to (a) accident and emergency, (b) paediatrics and (c) maternity departments; and if he will make a statement. [37178]

Mr. Malone: The content of postgraduate medical training programmes, taking into account the needs of individual trainees, is the responsibility of the relevant royal college or faculty and the postgraduate deans. Opportunities exist to gain clinical experience in the specialties referred to in most district general hospitals.

Tranquillisers and Anti-depressants

Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list the total cost and the cost per head of population of expenditure within the GP prescribing scheme for (a) tranquillisers and (b) anti-depressants for each health district in England and Wales for the year 1995-96. [37565]

Mr. Malone: The available information will be placed in the Library. Questions relating to Wales are a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Wales.

Private Nursing Homes

Mr. Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when was the most recent review of registration and inspection of privately run nursing homes. [37860]

Mr. Bowis: The review of the regulation and inspection of social services, launched in September 1995, covers the regulation and inspection of nursing homes which provide care of a kind which local authorities may be required to arrange under their community care responsibilities.

Contract Settlements

Mr. Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list the principles used by each NHS region in its arbitration process on contract settlements between NHS purchasers and providers; and what measures are taken by the NHS executive to ensure that these principles are consistent between regions. [38032]

Mr. Malone: Guidance on the resolution of disputes and setting out the principles for arbitration was issued in March 1991 as EL(91)11 and copies were placed in the Library.

DIY-related Accidents

Mr. Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people (a) in total and (b) over the age of 50 years have been injured in do-it-yourself-related accidents in each of the last five years. [37897]

Mr. Horam: The data requested are contained in the Department of Trade and Industry's consumer safety unit "Annual Report on Home and Leisure Safety Research; Home Accident Surveillance System Monitoring Product Safety" reports, copies of which are available in the Library.

Mr. Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what has been the cost to the NHS of treating people injured in do-it-yourself-related accidents in each of the last five years. [37896]

Mr. Horam: This information is not available.

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Bed Blocking (Geriatric Wards)

Sir Michael Shersby: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make an assessment of the extent of bed blocking in geriatric wards of NHS hospitals caused by patients being unable to obtain places in extra care homes run by charitable organisations, with particular reference to the Abbeyfield Society; if he will initiate discussions with the Secretary of State for Social Security to obtain authorisation for the provision of beds in registered extra care homes; and if he will make a statement. [37902]

Mr. Bowis: It is for health and local authorities to make an assessment of any factors affecting delayed hospital discharges locally.

Abortion

Sir Graham Bright: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the statistically most likely candidate for an abortion within the Anglia and Oxford region after the 24th week of pregnancy in the latest year for which figures are available in terms of (a) the age of the woman, (b) marital status of the woman, (c) the number of previous children of the woman and (d) the grounds on which the abortion is performed. [38028]

Mr. Horam: The statistically most likely candidate for an abortion for each of the variables listed is the category with the highest recorded frequency of legal terminations. The percentages are based on all legal terminations in the Anglia and Oxford region in 1993.

The categories with the highest frequencies found in each of the variables were:


Sir Graham Bright: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the statistically most likely candidate for an abortion within the Anglia and Oxford region in the latest year for which figures are available in terms of (a) the age of the woman, (b) marital status of the woman, (c) the number of previous children of the woman and (d) the grounds on which the abortion is performed. [38027]

Mr. Horam: The statistically most likely candidate for an abortion for each of the variables listed is the category with the highest recorded frequency of legal terminations. The percentages are based on all legal terminations in the Anglia and Oxford region in 1993.

The categories with the highest frequencies found in each of the variables were:


22 Jul 1996 : Column: 114

Disciplinary Hearings (Northern Region)

Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list (i) the number of (a) medical and (b) nursing staff suspended or dismissed at each NHS trust in the Northern region since 1 January 1993 and (ii) the number of staff in each category heard by disciplinary hearings of trusts who were not so suspended or dismissed in this period. [38160]

Mr. Horam: Such information on nursing staff is not available centrally. The information available is set out.

Decisions on employment matters rests with the employing authority or national health service trust. Since 31 March 1995, national health service employers have reported cases of suspension of hospital and community medical and dental staff lasting more than six months. Information is, therefore, available only on those cases of suspension over six months and from that date.

In the Northern and Yorkshire region only one such case of suspension was reported for medical and dental staff between 31 March 1995 and 20 June 1996.


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