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3 Dec 2002 : Column 752W—continued

Birth Statistics (Buckinghamshire)

Mr. Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many live births there were, broken

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down by ethnic groups, in hospitals in Buckinghamshire in (a) 2001, (b) 2000, (c) 1999, (d) 1998 and (e) 1997. [83335]

Ms Blears: The information requested is not collected centrally.

Cancer Care

Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much of the money pledged for improved cancer care has been taken up by primary care trusts and hospital trusts. [83700]

Ms Blears: The Department does not collect information on how much is spent on individual programmes. However, we know that all areas have invested in cancer services. The national cancer director, Professor Mike Richards, is working with chief executives of strategic health authorities to ensure that the money allocated for cancer services this year and next year gets through to cancer services and that Cancer Plan targets are met.

We are devolving power from the centre to locally run services to allow the freedom to innovate and improve care for patients. The increased resources that we have made available and will continue to make available to support the implementation of the Cancer Plan will move to the National Health Service frontline. Primary care trusts will have freedom to decide where NHS resources are best spent, but they will need to account publicly for how they have used resources against the test of high clinical standards and good value for money.

Cancer Treatment (Musgrove Hospital)

Mr Liddell-Grainger: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people are on the waiting list for cancer treatment at Musgrove Hospital. [83385]

Ms Blears: Information on the number of patients waiting for cancer treatment is not collected centrally. Waiting list information is collected at consultant specialty level and it is, therefore, not possible to derive those patients waiting cancer treatment.

Care Homes

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the NVQ level 4 registered managers award for care homes; and if he will make a statement. [83763]

Jacqui Smith [holding answer 28 November 2002]: The Registered Managers (Adults) Level 4 National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) is a new award that is based on the national occupational standards for registered managers, adult residential, that were developed by Topss England last year. This NVQ was first offered in March 2002 and the candidates undertaking these courses will not yet have completed the award. It is therefore not possible to assess how effective the new award will be in the workplace at this stage.

National occupational standards are reviewed on a five year rolling programme and any changes are then reflected in the associated NVQ. In the meantime, the reports done by National Care Standard Commission

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(NCSC) Inspectors should provide details of any improvements in the management of care homes and state whether a registered manager holds the new registered manager (adults) award.

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the available capacity in the training sector to provide (a) care staff with NVQ level 2 and (b) registered managers with NVQ level 4, by 2005. [83764]

Jacqui Smith [holding answer 28 November 2002]: We are aware that there is not a very strong National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) infrastructure within the care sector at present. This is why part of the £15 million in the training strategy implementation fund for 2002–03 is being used to support 11,500 line managers who are undertaking training to become NVQ assessors, verifiers and mentors. The fund is administered by Topss England, the former national training organisation for social care.

In order to receive some of these funds, social care employers are invited to develop, either alone or in partnership, arrangements to support the establishment and development of work based assessment, verification and mentoring arrangements. This will both improve the quality of existing provision and increase the availability of appropriately qualified and experienced staff.

Officials from my Department are also working with Department of Education and Skills and Topss England to reduce barriers to completion of NVQs and improve the quantityand quality of provision.

Child Migrants

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much money has been disbursed under the aegis of the Support Fund for the Welfare of Child Migrants; how many benefited from the fund; and what assistance is now given to child migrants. [84030]

Jacqui Smith : The Government made available £1 million over three years, ending in 2002, for a support fund for travel and subsistence for former child migrants who wished to make first-time visits to the United Kingdom to be reunited with close family. By the end of October this year the Fund had helped 430 former child migrants. A further five may still be supported by it, depending on the state of their health.

This Government continues to fund the work of the child migrants trust, which helps former child migrants trace their families and provides support for family reunions.

Child Protection

Ms Shipley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list the Departments with which he has interdepartmental links regarding the protection of children from physical and sexual abuse; and when he has had meetings with each of these Departments since May 1997. [83349]

Jacqui Smith: The Department works closely with all other Government Departments which have an interest in safeguarding children.

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My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Health has had no meetings with ministerial colleagues specifically regarding the protection of children from physical and sexual abuse. I have policy responsibility for child protection and therefore attend interdepartmental meetings in this connection.

Children in Care

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of young people leaving care in each year since 1993 were aged 16. [84024]

Jacqui Smith: The proportion of young people aged 16 leaving care in each year since 1993 is shown in the table.

Number of young people who left care aged 16, since 1993—England

Year ending 31 MarchTotal number of leaversNumber of leavers aged 16Percentage of leavers aged 16


All numbers rounded to the nearest 100


DH Form SSDA903

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will place in the Library copies of responses to the consultation on the complaints procedure for children in care, XListening to People". [84806]

Jacqui Smith: We will place in the Library copies of responses to the consultation document XListening to People", except those where respondents requested that replies remain confidential, in the next few weeks.

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many young people left care in each of the past five years; and of those, how many left without having attained any GCSEs at A*-G grades. [84022]

Jacqui Smith : These data are only available from year ending 31 March 2000 onwards. The available information is set out in the table.

Number of Children who ceased to be looked after during the years ending 31 March 2000 to 2002 by age and educational qualifications
England   Numbers

All care leavers in the year26,80025,100(25)
(0 to 18 years)
Care leavers aged 16 and over6,7606,5606,340
of which:
The number with no GCSE passes (A*-G)4,7804,2003,850

(25) Indicates figure not available until March 2003

All figures rounded to the nearest 10.

Above tables excludes all children looked after under agreed series of short term placements.

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Colorectal Cancer Screening

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to introduce colorectal cancer screening. [84031]

Ms Blears: In a speech to the Britain Against Cancer Conference on 5 November 2002, my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Health reaffirmed his commitment to introduce a national screening programme for colorectal cancer and to improve services for symptomatic patients. It will take several years to do this. The national cancer director will be working with all the relevant experts to determine the best way forward, and specifically to consider workforce, capacity and skills requirements for both screening and symptomatic services.

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