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Ante-natal/Neo-natal Screening

Mr. Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on his Department's policy on the use of (a) ante and (b) neo-natal screening. [103652]

Yvette Cooper [holding answer 21 December 1999]: Ante and neo-natal screening procedures can be vital in the detection of impending illness and onset of disease, where these allow for early and effective intervention. There are many screening procedures, some of which have the potential to build upon the current screening programme.

We look to the National Screening Committee for the United Kingdom to appraise screening programmes, current and proposed, against a set of internationally recognised criteria and to advise on additions or changes.

Pregnancy Advice Centres

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to regulate pregnancy advice centres which do not refer clients on to medical procedures. [103668]

Yvette Cooper [holding answer 21 December 1999]: It is not possible or practical to regulate the activities of every place, outside the National Health Service, that provides advice and information to women on pregnancy matters.

We do maintain a register of pregnancy advice bureaux that provide a medical consultation and refer women on for abortion. This list of registered places is publicly available and will shortly be on the Department's website.

Life Fertility Programme

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans his Department has to fund the Life National Hotline and the Life Fertility Programme. [103669]

Yvette Cooper [holding answer 21 December 1999]: Decisions on applications received for funding under Section 64 of the Health Services and Public Health Act 1968 from 2000-01 onwards have not yet been made.

Routine Admissions (Suspension)

Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list those NHS trusts which have suspended routine admissions for at least (a) one week and (b) two weeks over the Christmas and New Year period. [104281]

Ms Stuart: The information requested is not held centrally. The decision to suspend routine admissions would have been made at local level based on guidance on planning for winter and the millennium holiday period issued earlier last year.

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Health Authority Funding

Mr. Chope: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will express in per capita terms the (a) actual and (b) percentage funding increases for each health authority in England in 2000-01. [104171]

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

Health authorityCash increase per capita (£)Cash increase Percentage
Barking and Havering42.776.39
Bexley and Greenwich43.006.22
Brent and Harrow43.326.38
Bury and Rochdale47.857.26
Calderdale and Kirklees42.516.64
Camden and Islington59.456.79
Cornwall and Isles of Scilly42.386.55
County Durham48.047.04
Ealing, Hammersmith and Hounslow47.066.70
East and North Hertfordshire38.686.91
East Kent41.716.22
East Lancashire48.677.10
East London and the City62.638.02
East Riding43.206.96
East Surrey37.496.21
East Sussex, Brighton and Hove42.596.25
Enfield and Haringey44.806.53
Gateshead and South Tyneside51.047.18
Isle of Wight45.586.21
Kensington, Chelsea and Westminster62.498.50
Kingston and Richmond39.056.22
Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham54.636.85
Merton, Sutton and Wandsworth42.706.31
Morecambe Bay42.166.37
Newcastle and North Tyneside48.896.89
North and East Devon39.906.32
North and Mid Hampshire34.756.57
North Cheshire41.346.38
North Cumbria43.236.92
North Derbyshire41.986.77
North Essex38.986.68
North Nottinghamshire43.877.12
North Staffordshire47.237.24
North West Lancashire47.366.79
North Yorkshire39.386.71
Portsmouth and South East Hampshire39.956.69
Redbridge and Waltham Forest42.246.22
Salford and Trafford45.796.56
South and West Devon41.376.42
South Cheshire38.606.40
South Derbyshire41.456.95
South Essex41.687.05
South Humber39.966.24
South Lancashire39.896.48
South Staffordshire37.536.63
Southampton and South West Hampshire39.486.68
St Helen's and Knowsley49.337.14
West Hertfordshire38.846.52
West Kent37.176.41
West Pennine46.537.00
West Surrey36.556.26
West Sussex42.096.76
Wigan and Bolton47.837.28


1. Crude population figures supplied by the Office for National Statistics have been used to calculate the per capita figures.

2. Amounts include increases to targeted funding for Health Action Zones.

10 Jan 2000 : Column: 65W



17. Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what plans he has to improve the level of benefits paid to carers. [102947]

Mr. Bayley: We are committed under the National Carer's Strategy to keeping financial support for carers under review, which we are doing.

Social Exclusion

21. Mr. Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what further resources are proposed to reduce social exclusion. [102951]

Mr. Bayley: Over this Parliament we are investing an extra £40 billion in health and education, and we will be spending an additional £6 billion a year by the end of this Parliament in new measures to tackle child poverty.

It is this Government that have made tackling poverty and social exclusion its priority. We are currently examining resources in the spending review and will make an announcement next year.

10 Jan 2000 : Column: 66W

25. Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will set out the Government's plans to tackle poverty and social exclusion arising out of welfare dependency. [102955]

Mr. Bayley: A key element in our strategy for tackling poverty and social exclusion is to reduce the number of people claiming out-of-work benefits by helping people find work.

The proportion of people living in working age workless households doubled between 1979 and 1997--this is the legacy we inherited and the challenge we face. It is a problem we are committed to overcome through our programme of welfare reform.

One-Stop Benefits

22. Mr. Pike: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how the one-stop benefit trials are progressing. [102952]

29. Mr. Borrow: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will make a statement on progress so far with the ONE pilots. [102959]

Angela Eagle: The ONE service began operating in four pilot areas on 28 June 1999, and in eight more areas on 29 November. The early signs from the pilots appear encouraging but it will, of course, take time to make a full assessment of the impact. When robust and reliable data are available we will, of course, make it public.

Minimum Income Guarantee

23. Ms Rosie Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what steps he is taking to ensure maximum take-up of the minimum income guarantee by those entitled to it. [102953]

Mr. Rooker: We are committed to taking action to find more effective ways of encouraging eligible pensioners to claim their entitlement to the minimum income guarantee. We will announce details of a national programme shortly.

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