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Departmental Staff

Mr. Prisk: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many people his Department employed, expressed as full time equivalents, and what was the total cost of employing them in (a) 1997, (b) 1998, (c) 1999, (d) 2000 and (e) 2001 to date. [9190]

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Mr. Paul Murphy: Staff numbers are as follows:

Welsh Office(1)Wales Office(2)

(1) To 30 June 1999.

(2) From 1 July 1999.


1. On 1 July 1999, most of the Secretary of State's executive functions transferred to the National Assembly for Wales.

2. Figures include casual employees.

1997, 1998 and 2000 figures are full-time equivalents averaged over the year.

3. 1999 figures are January to June average for Welsh Office and July to December average for Wales Office.

4. 2001 figure is full-time equivalents averaged from January to the present.

Running costs are published in annual departmental reports.


Continuing Care

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many residents in nursing homes are fully funded by the NHS under continuing care criteria. [7395]

Jacqui Smith [holding answer 15 October 2001]: The total number of people in the year 2000–01 newly meeting the eligibility criteria for continuing national health service health care was 25,303.


Mr. Kidney: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what assessment he has made of the adequacy of existing research programmes into conditions of dystonia; [7711]

Mr. Hutton: The cause of dystonia is unknown and there is not, currently, an effective cure. That is why the research being carried out by the Medical Research Council (MRC) is so important. The MRC is the main Government agency for research into the causes of and treatment of disease and is funded by the Department of Trade and Industry. The MRC has provided substantial funding for research into the causes of dystonia and other movement disorders. The Medical Research Council spent £2.25 million in 2000–01 on dystonia research.

Current projects being supported are:

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The Department keeps priorities for research under review and these are determined through discussion with the departmental research committee and others. In the national health service, priorities are identified through widespread consultation with those using, delivering and managing services.

Waiting Times

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list waiting times in each hospital trust in England for (a) cataracts, (b) hip replacements and (c) heart bypasses, in (i) 1997 and (ii) at the latest date for which figures are available. [7614]

Mr. Hutton [holding answer 15 October 2001]: Data on median waiting times for cataract, hip replacement and heart bypass procedures for 1997–98, 1998–99 and 1999–2000 have been placed in the Library.

Clinical Services

Mr. Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will consider proposals for strategic health authorities that cross boundaries of Government office regions to coincide with patterns of delivery of clinical services. [8041]

Mr. Hutton: The criteria for proposed strategic health authorities are that they should have a population of around 1.5 million, their boundaries should be coterminous with an aggregate of local authority boundaries and their boundaries should not cut across Government office for the regions boundaries. It has also been determined that boundaries should reflect clinical networks as closely as possible. The criteria for strategic health authority boundaries are in line with the principles set out in the Modernising Government White Paper. We have no plans to review the criteria for strategic health authority boundaries.


Mr. McLoughlin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he will reply to the letter from the hon. Member for West Derbyshire dated 18 August concerning drug prices in Great Britain and other European countries. [7353]

Ms Blears: A reply to the hon. Member's letter of the 15 August was sent on 18 October.

Pharmacists Remuneration

Mr. Todd: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he expects to agree pharmacists' remuneration terms for 2001–02. [7266]

Mr. Hutton: We have made an offer to the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC), which represents all community pharmacies providing National Health Service pharmaceutical services in England and Wales. We hope to conclude discussions with PSNC shortly.

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Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when the hon. Member for Mid-Dorset and North Poole will receive a reply to her question of 4 July concerning funding for hospices ref 2853. [8721]

Ms Blears: I wrote to the hon. Member on 8 October 2001.

HPV Scheme

Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many people he expects to participate in the limited implementation HPV pilot scheme in (a) Newcastle, (b) north Bristol and (c) Norfolk and Norwich; [8499]

Jacqui Smith [holding answer 19 October 2001]: The pilot study of liquid based cytology and human papilloma virus testing as triage for women with mild or borderline abnormalities began in April 2001, as planned. Women with a mild or borderline screening result in the pilot will have an HPV test in accordance with the pilot protocol. In 2000–01, the number of cervical screening tests and the percentage of tests with a mild or borderline result for the three pilot site areas are shown in the table.

Pilot sites
2000–01NewcastleNorth BristolNorfolk and Norwich
Number of women screened54,00054,00030,000
Percentage of women with a borderline/mild abnormality8713


Statistical Bulletin—Cervical Screening Programme, England: 2000–01

The HPV arm of the pilot will end in September 2002. Analysis of the data will begin in October 2002, and the report of the evaluation of the pilot will be submitted in early 2003. The pilot study is expected to cost some £1.3 million.

The NHS Cancer Plan set out the commitment that if evaluation of the pilots is successful, the Government will fund their introduction across the national health service.

Cervical Cancer

Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what (1) proportion of deaths from cervical cancer occurred in women (a) over the age of 60 and (b) under the age of 30 years in each year since 1994; [8501]

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Jacqui Smith [holding answer 18 October 2001]: The number of deaths from cervical cancer since 1994 are shown in the table:

Under 30 (percentage)30 to 59 (percentage)60 and over (percentage)All ages
199425 (1.9)505 (36.9)838 (61.2)1,369
199533 (2.5)538 (40.2)768 (57.4)1,339
199628 (2.1)508 (38.6)779 (59.2)1,315
199725 (2.0)494 (40.3)706 (57.6)1,225
199824 (2.1)470 (40.6)664 (57.3)1,158
199924 (2.2)421 (38.0)662 (59.8)1,107
200014 (1.3)437 (39.7)651 (59.1)1,102


Office for National Statistics

The percentage of United Kingdom women participating in the cervical screening programme is shown in the table:

Age rangePercentage coverage(3)
Under 3066.8
30 to 4984.9
50 to 5983.9
60 to 6477.6
25 to 6483.0

(3) Proportion of women resident who have had a test with a result in the last five years


Statistical Bulletin—Cervical Screening Programme, England: 1996–97 to 2000–01

Women aged over 64 are invited if their previous two tests were not clear or if they have never been screened. Data by ethnic group are not held centrally.

YearTotal number of cervical screening testsPercentage inadequate


Statistical Bulletin—Cervical Screening Programme, England: 1996–97 to 2000–01

Information is not held centrally on the number of women diagnosed with cervical cancer who had a clear test record. When a woman is diagnosed with cervical cancer, her screening history and smear slides are reviewed. No screening test is 100 per cent. accurate. Early detection and treatment can prevent 80 to 90 per cent. of cervical cancers developing.

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