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Contractual Liabilities

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many health authorities, NHS trusts or social services departments engaged Mrs. Jenny Upshall as a consultant or trainer or in any other capacity during the time she worked for Integrate Services in Warrington; and if he will estimate the cost of these services to the NHS; [130670]

Mr. Hutton [holding answer 18 July 2000]: Full details of Mrs. Upshall's employment history are not held by the Department. North Cheshire Health Authority took legal advice about underwriting redundancy payments; neither the Department centrally or regionally, nor any other public body as far as I can ascertain, were approached for guidance.

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Pregnancy and Sexually Transmitted Diseases

(Young People in Care)

Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Health for what reason his Department does not collect data on the incidence of pregnancy and sexually-transmitted diseases among young people who are in the care of the state; and if he will make a statement. [131416]

Yvette Cooper [holding answer 19 July 2000]: The Department does not collect data through social care systems on the incidence of pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases among young people who are in the care of the state. Young people over 16 and those under 16 who are deemed to be Gillick-competent have the right to seek medical advice for pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases without the consent or knowledge of parents or carers.

Within the Quality Protects programme, the Department does require councils to draw up proposals for assessing and reducing rates of teenage pregnancy in their areas, especially among those young people for whom they have parenting responsibilities.

CJD

Mr. David Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many of the cases of confirmed or probable new variant CJD in the UK have been individuals who have lived in Leicestershire; what assessment he has made of whether this constitutes a cluster which is unlikely to have occurred by chance; what investigation into this problem in Leicestershire is planned; and if he will make a statement. [131213]

Yvette Cooper [holding answer 19 July 2000]: I refer my hon. Friend to the reply I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Stockport (Ms Coffey) on 17 July 2000, Official Report, column 78W.

Radiographers

Mr. Allan: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make it his policy to publish annually the decisions of the Radiographers Board in relation to applications from foreign qualified radiographers to work as diagnostic radiographers in the UK, indicating the number who (a) apply by country, (b) are rejected by country, (c) appeal successfully and (d) after an adaptation period are accepted by the Board, stating the length of adaptation period. [131217]

Mr. Denham: I understand that decisions of the Radiographers Board relating to applications from radiographers qualified in other member states of the European Economic Area are provided biennially to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, together with decisions made by all other competent authorities in the member states. The combined figures for all member states are published biennially by the European Commission. The figures for 1997-98 were published on 1 May 2000 and are available from the European Commission Rue de la Loi 200, B, 1049, Brussels, Belgium under reference number MARKT/ D4/8550/2-EN. Information about applications from other foreign qualified radiographers is available from the Radiographers Board on request.

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Mr. Tynan: To ask the Secretary of State for Health for what reasons German-trained radiographers are not accepted by the Radiographers Board for work in the United Kingdom until they have completed a period of adaptation. [131218]

Mr. Denham: This is a matter for the Radiographers Board of the Council for Professions Supplementary to Medicine. The Board may require applicants from member states of the European Economic Area to complete an adaptation period or take an aptitude test where the education and training they have received differs substantially from those required for registration in the United Kingdom.

Mr. Tynan: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many radiographers qualified in Germany, who applied to the Radiographers Board for registration in the UK as diagnostic radiographers and have been rejected until they have completed a period of adaptation, have successfully appealed against the decision in the last three years. [131220]

Mr. Denham: This is a matter for the Radiographers Board of the Council of Professions Supplementary to Medicine, but I understand that there have been no successful appeals against a Board decision.

Mr. Tynan: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many radiographers who qualified in Germany and have applied for registration as a diagnostic radiographer to the Radiographers Board have been registered in each of the last three years. [131221]

Mr. Denham: The Radiographers Board has informed me that in 1997 there were two applications from German-trained radiographers of whom one was registered and one was given a period of 12 months adaptation; in 1998, there were no applications; and in 1999 there was one application which resulted in a 12 month period of adaptation. Both have successfully completed the period of adaptation and have been registered.

"Protecting Children, Supporting Parents"

Mr. Dawson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many responses have been received to his Department's consultative paper entitled "Protecting Children, Supporting Parents" which organisations and individuals responded to the consultation; if he will place copies of the responses in the Library; and when he plans to publish the Government's proposals. [131236]

Mr. Hutton: Responses to the consultation document "Protecting Children, Supporting Parents" are still being logged, but over 865 responses had been received by the end of April 2000.

This substantial set of responses is currently being analysed and once this is complete, a summary of the views will be published, together with our proposals. We expect this to be available in the autumn.

It is not normal practice to list the names of all those who have responded, nor to place copies of responses in the Library, and we have no plans to do so. It is of course open to individuals and organisations to make their responses public, should they wish to do so.

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HC1 Forms

Mr. Nicholls: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he will take to simplify the HC1 form in order to reduce the number of forms which are incorrectly filled in. [130972]

Ms Stuart: The HC1 claim form has to collect all the information needed to calculate entitlement to help with health costs under the National Health Service Low Income Scheme. The options for making it simpler are therefore limited. It is already written in plain english, set out in sections and is fully "signposted" to guide people through it. It has been amended recently and the effectiveness of the latest version will be monitored closely.

Parliamentary Questions

Mr. Stunell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many written parliamentary questions were tabled to his Department between 19 October 1999 and 20 April; and how many have not received substantive answers, with disproportionate cost cited as the reason. [131223]

Ms Stuart: Of the 2,797 Questions tabled to the Department in the period between 19 October 1999 and 20 April 2000, we were unable to answer nine questions wholly or partially without incurring disproportionate costs.

"Fit for the Future?"

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he expects to announce his conclusions based on the responses received to "Fit For The Future?"; and if he will make a statement. [132064]

Mr. Hutton: I am today announcing the conclusions the Government have reached in relation to the physical standards in residential and nursing homes based on the responses to the consultation process on "Fit for the Future?". These are:


To ensure flexibility for existing provision that does not meet all of these standards but is otherwise of good quality, specific criteria will be set out over the standard relating to room sizes to allow some rooms which do not currently meet the 10 sq m standard to remain in use. These criteria will include:


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The standards for nine out of the 11 topic areas that we consulted upon in "Fit for the Future?" received overwhelming support and these will form the basis for the full set of national minimum standards which the Government will publish later this year.

I have today written to hon. and right hon. Members, as well as to the residential and nursing home organisations and other relevant bodies who have made representations on these issues.


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