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Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much has been spent on treating chronic myeloid leukaemia with a combination of cytosine therapy and interphon alpha by health authority year by year since 1997; and if he will make a statement. 
Yvette Cooper: The information requested is not available.
Ms Oona King: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what his estimate is of the number of beds freed within the NHS by the transfer of patients to hospice care in the last 12 months; 
Yvette Cooper: In the NHS Cancer Plan we pledged that the national health service contribution to the costs of specialist palliative care (including hospices) would increase by £50 million by 2004. This investment is intended to help tackle inequalities in access to specialist palliative care and enable the NHS to increase their contribution to the cost hospices incur in providing agreed levels of service. The level of funding voluntary hospices receive is a matter for local decision based on a strategic view of local palliative care services. We have required all cancer networks to develop costed strategic investment plans for palliative care, which will inform the wider NHS planning process through Health Improvement Programmes and Service and Financial Frameworks for 20023.
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Information on the number of beds freed within the NHS by the transfer of patients to hospice care is not available centrally. There are approximately 2,000 hospice beds in the voluntary sector and over 400 beds in the NHS in England. About 120,000 people die annually from cancer in England; approximately 50 per cent. of these die in hospital, 13 per cent. die in hospices and 25 per cent. die in their own homes.
Dr. Evan Harris: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many NHS vacancies there were for (a) medical and dental staff, (b) qualified nurses, (c) professions allied to medicine and (d) administration and estates staff in (i) England and (ii) each health authority in (A) each year since 1997, (B) 1979 and (C) 1992. 
Mr. Hutton: The information requested has been placed in the Library.
Mr. Swayne: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the waiting time for occupational therapy for arthritis sufferers at (a) the Southampton University Hospital NHS Trust, (b) the Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Trust and (c) the Poole Hospital NHS Trust. 
Ms Blears: The information requested is not collected centrally.
Mr. Swayne: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the waiting time is from referral to first appointment with a consultant rheumatologist at (a) the Southampton University Hospital NHS Trust, (b) the Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Trust and (c) the Poole Hospital NHS Trust. 
Ms Blears: The information requested is shown in the table.
|Code/Trust name||Average (median) waiting time (in weeks)|
|Poole Hospital NHS Trust||6.10|
|Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Trust||6.33|
|Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust||6.32|
1. The average waiting time is calculated as the median waiting time of those patients seen during the quarter for a first out-patient appointment in rheumatology specialty following GP referral.
2. Data are for quarter ended December 2001.
QM08 waiting times return.
Brian White: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what national guidelines exist to govern the procedures and follow up intervals for patients treated for primary cancer of the bladder; 
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Yvette Cooper: The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) is commissioning a comprehensive package of guidance on cancer services covering all cancers which health authorities and NHS trusts will be expected to implement.
NICE guidelines are based on the best available research evidence and expert professional advice. Research may be commissioned by NICE, or consist of existing material, including guidelines and best practice in other countries.
NICE is expected to issue service guidance on urological cancer this summer.
Mr. Hinchliffe: To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to his answer of 12 February 2002, Official Report, column 327W, on the costs of staff redundancy packages arising as a consequence of organisational change in the NHS, if he will make it his policy to collate details of these costs by region; and what data his Department collates on the costs of staff redundancy. 
Mr. Hutton: In accordance with Her Majesty's Treasury financial reporting guidelines, information on provisions for premature retirement pensions are separately identified in the published annual accounts of
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national health service trusts and health authorities. There are currently no plans to extend these reporting requirements or routinely collate data by region as this would unduly add to the administrative burden for the NHS.
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to his answer of 13 March 2002, Official Report, column 1138W, on free nursing care, what estimate he has made of the number of assessments a person in receipt of free nursing care will need in the time they are in a care home. 
Jacqui Smith: Based on an average length of stay in a nursing home of 30 months, one would expect three to four reviews to be made following the initial assessments.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when his Department intends to respond to the letter of 23 January from the hon. Member for Aylesbury (ref. PO 003020). 
Ms Blears: A reply was sent on 21 March.
Mr. Paterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he expects to reply to the letter of 17 December 2001 from the hon. Member for North Shropshire on funding for the minor injuries unit at the RJ and AH Orthopaedic hospital, Gobonea. 
Yvette Cooper: A reply was sent on 6 March.