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Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of children's mental health services in England. 
Jacqui Smith: The main objective of our strategy for child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS), which is supported by £85 million of targeted funding 1999 to 2002, is to reduce waiting lists and geographical inequalities of access and to bring fragmented and variable local services up to an appropriate level. Considerable progress has been made including robust strategies for the development of local CAMHS, based on needs assessment, agreed between all health and local authorities; and significant increases in service provision (some 375 extra wte posts in 2000 and 46 new in-patient beds by 31 March 2002). Other developments are much improved co-operation and joint working between the main providing agencies and better links between CAMHS and related initiatives such as Sure Start, Quality Protects, Children's Services planning and Youth Offending Teams. However local services generally are not yet up to the required standard to meet current pressures. The inclusion of a CAMHS module in the forthcoming Children's National Service Framework will provide an opportunity to establish new standards and service models. It will also give guidance on good practice, drawing in part on a range of innovative projects in community settings which we are currently funding.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he last met ministers in the Cabinet Office to discuss
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the work of the Social Exclusion Unit and the relationship between poor mental health and social exclusion; and if he will make a statement. 
Jacqui Smith: The relationship between poor mental health and social exclusion has been considered within a number of contexts, most recently in relation to the Social Exclusion Unit's project on reducing re-offending among ex-prisoners. My hon. Friend the Parliamentary Under- Secretary for Health last met ministerial colleagues, including a Cabinet Office Minister, with regard to this work on 16 January 2002.
Ministerial consideration of the overarching social exclusion agenda is facilitated through the Domestic Affairs (Social Exclusion and Regeneration) cabinet sub-committee at which I represent my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State, and which is chaired by my hon. Friend the Deputy Prime Minister. DA (SER) last met on 18 December 2001.
We have a full programme for tackling the social exclusion of those with mental health problems. The National Service Framework for Mental Health (NSF) is a 10-year programme spelling out national standards for mental health, what they aim to achieve, how they should be developed and delivered and how to measure performance.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the achievements of the Children's Czar have been in the field of children's mental health. 
Jacqui Smith: Since his appointment on 18 July 2001, the National Clinical Director for Children, Professor Al Aynsley-Green, has been leading the work of the
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Children's Taskforce and development of the Children's National Service Framework (NSF). The NSF will include standards relating to the mental health and psychological well-being of children and young people, and Professor Aynsley-Green has established an external working group to provide advice on this area.
Engagement with, and listening to, stakeholders is a key part of the National Director's role. In the area of child and adolescent mental health, the National Director has held a number of wide-ranging discussions on the current issues, including discussions with the President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists and Faculty of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, informal meetings with voluntary organisations, including Young Minds, visiting several young people's psychiatric units around the country and addressing several major conferences including FOCUSa national meeting of child psychiatrists.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what role the National Institute for Mental Health for England will have in the field of children's mental health. 
Jacqui Smith: The National Institute for Mental Health in England will cover the full range of mental health services from childhood to old age. It will be concerned with mental health care in primary, specialist and tertiary care organisations, in both health and social care. It will address the issues surrounding children and other groups with special needs.
It will also ensure that the implementation of the mental health component of the Children's National Service Framework is integrated with the mental health agenda.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the timetable is for the National Institute for Mental Health to (a) be developed and (b) start work. 
Jacqui Smith: The National Institute for Mental Health in England was launched in July 2001 and the first wave of work was announced on 10 October, World Mental Health Day. A small project team has been working to develop the role and function of the institute and a full consultation has recently concluded. The team are now looking to put formal structures in place and key appointments will be made over the coming months.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what the work is of the care group workforce teams; 
(3) when the Care Group Workforce Team on Mental Health was established; and what is its remit; 
(4) what powers the Care Group Workforce Team on Mental Health has; 
Jacqui Smith: The care group workforce teams are multi-disciplinary bodies set up to support the National Workforce Development Board (NWDB) and the relevant service taskforce. They lead on national strategies for producing the right workforce to deliver NHS Plan
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commitments for service improvements, across health, social care and the independent and voluntary sectors, within their remit.
Seven CGWTs were established on 19 November 2001. They cover services for children (including maternity and gynaecology), older people, cancer, coronary heart disease, mental health, long-term conditions (including diabetes and renal), and emergency care (including accident and emergency, ambulance services, and critical care).
The CGWTs do not hold dedicated budgets but influence the way mainstream national health service budgets are spent.
The terms of reference and first year priorities for each care group are currently being finalised and will be placed in the Library shortly.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how the success of the care group work force teams on mental health will be evaluated. 
Jacqui Smith: The overall success of the care group work force teams will be measured by the provision of a work force that better matches service needs. The mental health care group work force team will develop specific mechanisms as part of its first year work programme.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the average time which a general practitioner spends with a patient has been in the last 12 months for which figures are available. 
Mr. Hutton: The most recent statistics on general practitioner consultation times are drawn from the GP work load survey of 199293 which records that the average GP consultation time with a patient was 8.4 minutes.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he (a) has taken and (b) will take to implement Core Principles for the Involvement of Children and Young People; and what progress has been made in drawing up an action plan. 
Jacqui Smith: The Department is playing a leading role in engaging children and young people in the development of policy. Development of the Department's action plan is well advanced. Participation of children and young people underpins both the Quality Protects programme and implementation of the NHS Plan.
The Department was one of the first Government Departments to create a young people's reference group. This group is serving as a model of good practice for other Government Departments and local councils.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether all general practitioners are expected to meet his 48 hours' access target by 2004. 
Mr. Hutton: All patients on every general practitioners' list will have access to a GP within 48 hours by 2004. This does not need to be a named GP. Health authorities and primary care trusts have been working
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with GPs and others to secure delivery of these targets. In doing so they are supported by the work of the National Primary Care Development Team and by resources from the PCT primary care access fund.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he last met Ministers in the Home Office to discuss the training of prison nurses to carry out mental health assessments; and if he will make a statement. 
Jacqui Smith: I am in regular contact with the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Community and Custodial Sentences at the Home Office (Beverley Hughes) over a wide range of prison matters, among them issues related to the training of nurses and other health care staff working in prisons.
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