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Mental Health

Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much money there was in the Mental Health Research and Development budget in each region (a) at the end of the financial year 1999-2000 and (b) at the beginning of financial year 2000-01. [120034]

Mr. Hutton: Government funding for research is provided through a number of routes.

The Medical Research Council (MRC) is the main agency through which the Government supports research on the causes and treatment of disease. The MRC receives most of its income via grant-in-aid from the office of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry. The Department funds research to support policy

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development in health and social care, and to support effective practice in the National Health Service. The Department also provides NHS support funding for research commissioned by the MRC and charities that takes place in the NHS.

Research is commissioned from the organisations best able to undertake high quality work. Funding is not allocated on a regional basis.

The MRC spent approximately £63 million in 1999-2000 and estimates that it will spend £66 million in 2000-01 on neuroscience and mental health research.

The Department invests approximately £40 million per year on research directly relevant to mental health, £7 million on directly commissioned projects, and £33 million to support work on mental health funded by research councils and charities which is undertaken in the NHS. Management of the research supported by NHS research and development funding in trusts is devolved and details of expenditure at the project level are not currently collected routinely by the Department. It is not therefore possible to give accurate details of expenditure year by year.

Project details of work directly funded by the Department or supported through NHS research and development funding can be found on the National Research Register (NRR). This is available in the Library and most medical libraries on CD Rom, and on the Internet: http://www.doh.gov.uk/nrr.htm. The NRR also contains many details of projects/trials funded by the MRC and other funders.

Heart Operations

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many heart operations were performed in each of the last 10 years. [119991]

Yvette Cooper: The table shows the number of finished consultant episodes where a heart operation was performed, and the number of finished consultant episodes where a coronary artery bypass graft was performed, in National Health Service hospitals in England for the years 1989-90 to 1998-99.

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OPCS4R codes used/Procedure1989-901990-911991-921992-931993-941994-951995-961996-971997-981998-99
K40-46/CABGs12,48314,07016,04618,35220,39423,53322,92222,69422,18123,663
K01-70/All heart ops(23)--83,065106,374120,394130,502148,797153,736162,146161,890177,650

(23) Data for 1989-90 for all heart operations is currently unavailable.

Notes:

1. Data in this table is grossed for both coverage and unknown/invalid clinical data, except for 1997-98 and 1998-99 which are ungrossed.

2. An FCE is defined as a period of patient care under one consultant in one health care provider. The figures do not represent the number of patients, as one person may have several episodes within the year.

3. These figures represent a count of all FCEs where the procedure was mentioned in any of the four operation fields in the HES data set

Source:

Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), Department of Health.


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Asylum Seekers

Mr. Coleman: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what amounts each London borough claimed in excess of the maximum grant available from his Department for (a) single asylum seekers and (b) asylum families with children for (i) 1997-98 and (ii) 1998-99; and if he will make a statement. [120028]

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Mr. Hutton: The table shows the maximum amounts that local authorities were eligible to claim per week for single adults and families with children in 1997-98 and 1998-99.

Local authorities could not claim in excess of these sums. Although a local authority's total relevant expenditure may have exceeded the maximum grant

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payable, any excess expenditure incurred above that sum would have to be met locally and not by central government.

The maximum amount payable in respect of each grant was as follows:

Amount payable
1997-98
Adults£140 per week
Families80 per cent. of relevant expenditure above relevant local authority threshold
1998-99
Adults£165 per week
Families£230 per family per week, or £240 in the case of any family of asylum seekers provided with services in Inner London prior to 23 November 1998

Squalene

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what adverse reactions there have been as a result of the use of squalene in vaccines. [120200]

Yvette Cooper: None. There are no licensed vaccines in the UK which include squalene as an adjuvant.

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if squalene is authorised for use in vaccines in the UK. [120105]

Yvette Cooper: Squalene is not authorised for use in vaccines in the United Kingdom.

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what monitoring his Department is undertaking of patients who have been given squalene vaccine. [120301]

Yvette Cooper: Squalene is not itself a vaccine, but has been licensed in Italy as an adjuvant to influenza vaccine. Monitoring of all vaccines given in the United Kingdom is performed by the Medicines Control Agency and the Committee on Safety of Medicines.

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent research he has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the use of squalene as an adjuvant in vaccines. [120104]

Yvette Cooper: No research has been commissioned on the use of squalene as an adjuvant in vaccines.

As for any new medicinal product, evaluation of research on the use of squalene as an adjuvant in vaccines, presented as part of a marketing application, would be performed by the Medicines Control Agency under conditions of commercial confidentiality.

European Food Authority

Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if the planned European Food Authority will replace the UK Food Standards Agency. [120188]

Ms Stuart: No it will not replace the United Kingdom Food Standards Agency. The White Paper clearly states that the proposed European Food Authority must be a "value-added structure" which will work in close co-operation with national agencies and institutions, thus making the best use of existing structures and resources.

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We envisage that the planned European Food Authority will work in close co-operation with our own agency which, in any case, has a wider remit than the proposed Authority.

Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the estimated first full year cost of running (a) the UK Food Standards Agency and (b) the European Food Authority. [120189]

Ms Stuart: The gross budget for the Food Standards Agency in its first full year (2000-01) is £148 million including £8 million for the executives in the devolved administrations, and £70 million for its executive agency, the Meat Hygiene Service. (The £148 million is net of internal transfers between the Food Standards Agency headquarters and the Meat Hygiene Service).

The Commission has proposed that the European Food Authority has a budget of only 100 million ecus (£62.5 million). We will have to be clear about whether this is an additional cost or total funding. Clearly most of the functions of the EFA are already performed elsewhere within the EU framework and we must be careful to avoid duplication of effort.

Food Safety White Paper

Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Health which of the proposed measures in the EU White Paper on food safety in the EU will be opposed by Her Majesty's Government. [120209]

Ms Stuart: The Government believe that consumer concerns and the complexity of current arrangements demand urgent action to develop a coherent European Union policy for the foodstuffs sector based firmly on the fundamental importance of consumer protection. We welcome the White Paper and share the objective it outlines.

We look forward to more detailed proposals on which discussion can take place once individual measures are brought forward.

Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what amendment of the law he plans to comply with the programme outlined in the EU White Paper on food safety. [120187]

Ms Stuart: The proposed legislative programme contains many individual initiatives which the Government have been pressing for and some have been expected for some time. In a number of cases the legislation proposed is amending existing legislation. We await individual, more detailed, proposals to be brought forward by the European Commission.

Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the additional costs to (a) the British food industry and (b) farmers of the proposals set out in the EU's White Paper on food safety. [120208]

Ms Stuart: None. The Commission has consulted widely on the White Paper and the Food Standards Agency has discussed various issues with key organisations, including those representing farmers and the food industry. They have been encouraged to respond direct to the Commission.

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Once individual proposals have been produced all interested stakeholders will be consulted. The United Kingdom will be pressing for proportionality, bearing in mind the need to safeguard the interests of the consumer.


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