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Mr. Gordon Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many sudden unexpected deaths from epilepsy there were in (a) Blackpool, (b) the north-west and (c) the UK in each of the last five years for which figures are available. 
|England and Wales||North-west(95)||Blackpool|
(95) North-west Government office region
"Sudden Epileptic Death" was defined as a death where the underlying cause was epilepsy and where "sudden death" appeared in the cause of death text when it was certified.
Office for National Statistics
Jacqui Smith: An out-patient service which is based at the neurology department of the Blackpool Victoria Hospital is available to residents in the Blackpool area and surrounding locality. Those patients requiring more specialist assessments and treatment are referred to the Royal Preston Hospital which provides the specialist service for epilepsy sufferers across Lancashire and South Cumbria. This is a clinic-based service under the direction of two consultant neurologists. A specialist nurse is also available who can provide follow up support to patients and families as appropriate. Where necessary patients can also be referred to the David Lewis Centre in Cheshire which provides a specialist centre for assessing and managing severe or complex epilepsy.
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Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many children are in (a) public and (b) private foster care in each authority; and of those, what proportion are out-of-area placements. 
Jacqui Smith: At 31 March 2001, there were 38,400 children being looked after by local councils in England, who were in foster care. Of these, 9,100 (or 24 per cent.) were in placements outside the boundaries of the council responsible for their care.
Jacqui Smith: There are no formal central guidelines in place for the appointment of multiple sclerosis (MS) nurses. The development and funding of specialist nursing posts to treat specific conditions such as MS is for primary care trusts, in partnership with other local stakeholders, to determine.
Health Service Circular HSC 2002004 on the 'Cost effective provision of disease modifying therapies for people with multiple sclerosis' does, however, contain some guidance on the funding of MS nurses as they relate to that scheme.
Mrs. Fitzsimons: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many adults with physical disabilities have been supplied with communication aids by community equipment stores in (a) 2001 and (b) 2002. 
Jacqui Smith: Additional funding for community equipment services has been, and will be, distributed through increased baseline allocations to health and social services in the years 200102 to 200304. Provision for improving funding for communication aids is part of those increased allocations and there are no plans to ring-fence it separately.
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Jacqui Smith: Additional funding for community equipment services has been, and will be, distributed through increased baseline allocations to health and social services in the years 200102 to 200304. Information about spend on physical equipment is not collected centrally.
Ms Blears: In July 2001 the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) was asked to set up an advisory group to look at the reform of clinical negligence in the NHS. It has not yet been possible to publish proposals for reform, because of the complexity of the issues raised by potential reforms, the need to consult widely (including through the Lord Chancellor's Department on how compensation is paid) and also to consider how potential proposals sit alongside a concurrent review of the NHS complaints procedure. Nevertheless, the CMO has now held the last of his advisory group meetings and will shortly publish the findings along with recommendations for reform.
Ms Blears [holding answers 11 March 2002]: The National Institute for Clinical Excellence is conducting an appraisal of anti-TNF treatments. Guidance was issued to the national health service on 22 March 2002.
Mr. Beith: To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the answer of 18 April 2002, Official Report, column 1177W, what the (a) names and (b) responsibilities are of unpaid advisers who have assisted the work of his Department since June 1997 but are not included in the Cabinet Office's annual report "Task Forces, Ad Hoc Advisory Groups and Reviews 200001". 
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However, a large number of outside experts provide their time and knowledge to the Department on an ad hoc basis as and when appropriate and without payment. I am grateful to all of them for their help which enriches the work of the Department. Information is not held centrally about such individual contributions.
Mr. Hutton [holding answer 22 May 2002]: The Department and the Royal College of Midwives are working closely to improve recruitment and retention by promoting flexible working, childcare, diversity and tackling harassment.
Mr. Hutton [holding answer 24 May 2002]: The Return Journeys booklet is the result of an assessment of returners' needs and sets out the incentives for people to return to a career in midwifery, or other health care careers in the national health service. I will arrange for a copy to be placed in the Library.
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