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Yvette Cooper: We are committed to tackling the rising trend in childhood obesity and action to encourage children to eat a balanced diet. We have put in place major cross-Government programmes of work to improve healthy eating and increase physical activity. This includes:
We already have a National Healthy School Programme, a joint initiative between the Department and the Department for Education and Skills, which has as one of its themes healthy eating. Schools are encouraged to provide, promote and monitor healthier food at lunch and break times and in any breakfast clubs. This will be complemented by the food in schools programme,
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Work to ensure that children have opportunities to participate in a wide range of physical and sporting activities. The Government's White Paper "Schoolsachieving success" gave a commitment that all children will be entitled to two hours of high quality physical education (PE) and school sport a week, within and outside the curriculum. Significant funding is also being provided to enhance PE and sports facilities in schools including £541 million from the new opportunities fund for a PE and Sports Programme.
|At 30 September||Consultants|
Department of Health medical and dental workforce census
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many cases have been brought against his Department under the Human Rights Act 1998; and what has been the cost in (a) legal fees to defend cases and (b) compensation payments. 
Ms Blears: We do not collect central records of all cases in which the Human Rights Act 1998 is relied upon. Human rights are now integrated in the general law and are rarely the sole basis for a challenge. We do monitor centrally those cases which we consider may be of particular significance to this Department. We have recorded 22 cases to date.
We do not collect information centrally about the costs to public funds, legal fees or compensation payments in cases which include a human rights issue. In most cases it will be difficult to single out associated costs relating to the human rights element.
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the target time will be in 200203 for (a) Ministers to reply to letters from hon. Members and (b) officials in his Department to reply to letters received directly from members of the public. 
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It is for health authorities in partnership with primary care groups/trusts and other local stakeholders to decide what services to provide for their populations including those who require treatment with UVB machines.
The Action On Dermatology (AOD) programme aims to identify, develop and share best practice in the organisation and delivery of services, with particular emphasis on improving access and reducing waiting times. Local services are helped to identify their constraints and to find effective solutions by developing new methods of organisation and clinical practice. A key element is the involvement of the clinical professions in identifying good practice and in encouraging its widespread adoption. Change in clinical practice is most effective when it is owned by clinicians themselves.
Jacqui Smith: The National Service Framework for Long-term Conditions (NSF) will have a particular focus on the needs of people with neurological disease, brain and spinal injury, as well as some of the common issues faced by people with a long-term condition.
We are investing in extra training places in neurology. We have announced an increase of up to 15 specialist registrars in neurology for 200204. This will mean that by 2009 there will be an additional 140 trained specialists available to take up consultant posts in neurology.
Mr. Hutton: The Department does not have a target specifically for therapy radiographers. They are included within the NHS Plan target for 6,500 more therapists and other health professionals by 2004, which will be met by improving recruitment and retention, encouraging return to practice, increasing number of students completing training and international recruitment.
Between 1997 and 2001 the number of therapeutic radiographers employed in the NHS has increased by 130 (9 per cent.) and the number of training places available for students has increased by 29 (21 per cent.).
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(3) how many hospital respiratory specialist physicians are in post, broken down by (a) coverage per head of the population and (b) NHS trust. 
Mr. Hutton: The Department does not set quotas for the numbers of hospital respiratory specialist physicians per head of population or by individual NHS Trust. We continually review future requirements for trained specialists as part of the NHS's new multi-disciplinary workforce planning processes. These look at the national requirements for doctors alongside other staff focusing on the potential for new ways of working and developing new roles.
As at September 2001 (latest figures available), there were 1.9 respiratory specialist physicians, consultants and doctors in training, per 100,000 of the population (England). Numbers of respiratory specialist physicians by NHS Trust are shown in the table, a copy of which has been placed in the Library.
Respiratory Medicine is not one of the specific specialties included in the NHS Vacancy Survey 2001 and information about the number of unfilled respiratory specialist physicians posts is not available centrally.
Dr. Evan Harris: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what efficiency and other value for money gains were achieved in the NHS as a percentage of health authority unified allocations, in each year since April 1999, and for the latest year for which figures are available. 
Mr. Hutton: Allocations to Health Authorities are based on an overall assessment of the resources required to cover inflationary pressures and deliver national targets. Allocations to Health authorities in 19992000 and 200001 were made net of 3 per cent. efficiency savings, and in 200102 allocations were made net of 2 per cent. efficiency savings. This means that health authorities needed to achieve the efficiency target to fully fund delivery of national targets and inflation.
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