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Ms Blears: Information used for management purposes should be accurate, relevant and timely to inform decision making which is appropriate and based on evidence. National health service managers are responsible for ensuing that the data collected and used by their organisation are of sufficient quality to meet their needs. Ideally, data should be collected once only, and verified as close as possible to the source of the data. Most NHS information systems have in-built validation routines which can check the quality of data as they are entered on to the system.
Further data quality checks are usually made as data pass between organisations. Data used to support commissioning, for example, are exchanged via the NHS-wide Clearing Service. Within this process, data quality reports are produced and returned to the data originator. In addition, the Department's regional offices provide feedback to NHS hospital trusts on the quality of data held in the NHS-wide clearing service database. The Department also produces data quality reports on the records received as hospital episode statistics, as well as validating other centrally required returns based on aggregated information.
The information policy unit has overall responsibility for the delivery of the information strategy for the national health service, ensuring that it is kept up to date and is co-ordinated with information and IT issues surrounding policy development.
26 Nov 2001 : Column: 738W
|Health authority||Amount granted|
|Bury and Rochdale||40|
|Calderdale and Kirklees||30|
|Cornwall and the Isle of Scilly||80|
|Ealing, Hammersmith and Hounslow||30|
|East and North Hertfordshire||50|
|East London and the City||30|
|East Riding and Hull||95|
|East Sussex, Brighton and Hove||35|
|Enfield and Haringey||25|
|Isle of Wight||65|
|Kingston and Richmond||40|
|Merton, Sutton and Wandsworth||30|
|North and East Devon||50|
|North and Mid Hampshire||50|
|North West Lancashire||50|
|Portsmouth and SE Hampshire||95|
|South and West Devon||95|
|Southampton and SW Hampshire||50|
|St. Helens and Knowsley||20|
26 Nov 2001 : Column: 739W
Jacqui Smith: Draft national minimum standards for younger adults' care homes were published for consultation between 29 June 2001 and 21 September 2001. 500 responses were received, expressing a range of views. We are now considering those responses and will publish the final version of the standards shortly.
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many registered nursing beds in (a) general and mental nursing homes, (b) private hospitals and (c) clinics there were in the North Yorkshire Health Authority area in (i) 1999 and (ii) 2000; and how many there are now. 
Jacqui Smith: The information available is given in the table. Details relating to 31 March 2001 will be published at the end of November 2001, in the Statistical Bulletin "Community Care Statistics 2001: Residential personal social services for adults, England".
|Registered beds in nursing homes(45)||3,974||4,198|
|Registered nursing beds in private hospitals and clinics||480||122|
(44) As at 31 March
(45) Registered nursing beds in general and mental nursing homes
Department of Health annual returns
Jacqui Smith: The table shows the number of residential care beds in the shire county of Kent and the number of registered nursing beds in East Kent and West Kent health authorities in 1997 and 2000. Details relating to 31 March 2001 will be published at the end of November 2001, in the Statistical Bulletin, "Community Care Statistics 2001: Residential personal social services for adults, England".
26 Nov 2001 : Column: 740W
(46) As at 31 March
(47) Figures for registered nursing beds relates to registered beds during the period 1 October 1996 to 31 March 1997
(48) Beds registered within Kent local authority, exclude children's beds
(49) Beds registered within East Kent and West Kent health authorities, all client groups
Department of Health's annual returns
Jacqui Smith: The consultation process seeking views to remove section 46 of the National Health Service and Community Care Act 1990, which requires councils to produce a community care plan, was completed on 5 November 2001. By that date, 115 responses were received.
Jacqui Smith [holding answer 22 November 2001]: Psychiatrists and other mental health staff work in prisons under a range of different organisational arrangements, full details of which are not held centrally.
Jacqui Smith [holding answer 22 November 2001]: Information on the number of general practices providing primary care in prisons is not held centrally. However, a survey this year of doctors who work in prisons showed that from the 225 who identified themselves as general practitioners, 180 were part time with 120 contracted to work for less than 10 hours a week.
There is no single model governing the recruitment of doctors to prison health care. Historically the system is one of mixed provision in which primary care is provided by doctors directly employed by the Prison Service, general practitioners under contract and locums, or by a combination of these arrangements. This flexibility allows for the most effective use of local labour markets.
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