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Bound volumes have been placed in the Library containing the 2001 reports of the Medicines Commission, the Committee on Safety of Medicines, the Advisory Board on the Registration of Homoeopathic Products, the British Pharmacopoeia Commission, the Independent Review Panel on Advertising, the Independent Panel for Borderline Products and the Veterinary Products Committee.
We are glad to acknowledge the valuable work done by the distinguished members of the Medicines Act advisory bodies and thank them for the time and effort dedicated in the public interest to this important work.
Ms Blears: The 200102 annual report and accounts for the Meat Hygiene Service were laid before Parliament today. Copies are available in the Library, but formal printing and publication will not occur for another 68 weeks, pending preparation of a version in Welsh as required by the Welsh Language Act.
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Ms Blears: We have received the report, and copies have today been laid before both Houses of Parliament in accordance with the requirements of sections 5(2) and 5(3) of the Exchequer and Audit Departments Act 1921. Copies have also been placed in the Library.
Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will publish the key targets for 200203 for the NHS Pensions Agency; and if he will make a statement about the future of the Agency. 
Mr. Hutton: I have agreed the Agency's key targets for 200203, and have placed copies in the Libraries of both Houses. A review of the Agency will be completed by the end of this year. This will address the performance of the Agency and will examine the options ('prior options') for the future of the Agency.
Mr. Hutton: I have approved the annual report and accounts which have today been laid before the House of Commons in accordance with the requirements of section 7 of the Government Resources and Accounts Act 2000.
Following emerging recommendations of the inter- departmental review of child care, recently carried out and due to report in the autumn, the Chancellor announced on 15 July that funding would be provided for children's centres to be set up in the most disadvantaged areas across England. The Government's long-term aim is to have such a centre in every disadvantaged ward in England. Building, where possible, on existing child care and Sure Start facilities, these centres will sit at the heart of the community offering integrated services and support to children, parents and child care providers. By March 2006, an additional 300,000 children and their parents will have access to health, education and other services through children's centres.
Ms Blears: The potential cost-effectiveness of introducing universal vaccination with pneumococcal polysaccharide for everyone over 65 years and efficacy of the vaccine in this age group is under investigation by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation.
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Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the mandate of the Committee for the implementation of the Community action programme for the prevention of AIDS and certain other communicable diseases is; how many times it has met over the last 12 months; what the United Kingdom representation on it is; what the annual cost of its work is to public funds; if he will list the items currently under its consideration; if he will take steps to increase its accountability and transparency to Parliament; and if he will make a statement. 
Ms Blears: The European Union Committee for the implementation of the Community action programme for the prevention of AIDS and certain other communicable diseases was mandated under Article 5 of Decision 647/96/EC of the European Parliament and the Council (amended under Article 4 of Decision 521/2001/EC).
The committee assisted the Commission in taking forward the programme by providing opinions on proposed measures by the Commission. It is due to terminate with the introduction of the new EU action programme on public health.
Costs of the committee to public funds are minimal. Meetings last one day, and the Commission pay the travel costs of nominated representatives. UK Departments are required to pay subsistence and UK costs.
The financial framework for implementation of the Community action programme for the prevention of AIDs and certain other communicable diseases, from 1 January 2002 to 31 December 2002, is euro 10.07 million.
Together with members states, the Commission is currently conducting a review to bring existing legislation on the conduct of comitology committees into line with Council Decision 1999/468/EC, to "simplify the requirements for the exercise of implementing powers conferred on the Commission".
As an obligation to the Decision, the Commission undertook to publish an annual report on the working of committees. The first report was deposited in the Libraries of both Houses on 28 February 2002 (Com (2001) 783 Final).
As part of the review process, the UK Government have encouraged the Commission to produce and maintain an electronic database of every comitology committee, its agendas and recent actions, to be accessible through its website: http://europa.eu.int/comm/health/index_en.html.
Mr. Jenkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what (a) progress has been made, (b) targets have been set and (c) success has been measured, in the public-private initiative in the NHS. 
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Mr. Hutton [holding answer 10 July 2002]: The Government set out their policies about the role of the private sector in the national health service in detail in the response to the House of Commons Health Committee's first report on the role of the private sector in the NHS, published on 10 July 2002 (Cm 5567).
over 100 new hospital schemes in total between 2000 and 2010 (both public and privately financed);
over half of the major 38 schemes given the go ahead at the time (July 2000) will be open by 200304 and the remainder will be under construction;
progress against Target 1: 64 major and 33 medium-sized PFI schemes have been given the go ahead. A further four major and six medium-sized schemes are being built under the public procurement route, making a total of 107 new hospital schemes;
progress against Target 2: 23 of the major PFI schemes are scheduled to become operational before the end of 2004. Three of the publicly procured schemes are scheduled to be operational by 2004;
success against Targets 1 and 2: 12 major PFI schemes and eight medium-sized schemes are already built and operational, as are two of the publicly procured schemes;
a further 12 major and 10 medium-sized schemes have signed final contracts and are under construction.
Mr. Caton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if he will make it his policy to require the release of detailed information, withheld from the public on the grounds of commercial confidentiality when private finance initiative contracts are awarded in the NHS, after a period of three years to permit assessment of their value for money; 
Mr. Hutton: The National Audit Office has indefinite access to all information in the business cases and private finance initiative contracts to allow independent, objective assessments of value for money.
Mr. Caton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what method the Government use to measure the value of risk in assessing value for money for NHS private finance initiative projects in the NHS. 
Mr. Hutton: Her Majesty's Treasury and the Department's guidance requires that a register of all risks is compiled which will provide a means for monitoring the evaluation and allocation of risk throughout the procurement exercise and whole life of private finance initiative project.
The methodology for assessing the values of risk includes standard techniques such as weighting and scoring analysis, single point and multi-point probability analysis. In addition, sensitivity analysis should always be undertaken on the risks which have been assessed as having relatively large values and those which are subject to the greatest uncertainty (e.g. due to lack of historical
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information). National health service trusts are required to use as much empirical information as possible in all their risk calculations.
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