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9 Dec 2002 : Column 168W—continued

NHS Staff (Reservists)

Alan Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health in respect of contingency planning to deal with the call up of NHS staff as medical reservists, for how many (a) doctors, (b) nurses and (c) other medical staff cover would have to be arranged; and what assessment he has made of how this would affect performance targets for NHS institutions. [83399]

Mr. Hutton: No decisions have been made about the call-up of medical reservists and so it is not possible to make any estimates concerning what cover may be needed. The Department would liase with the Ministry of Defence on any requirement to call up medical personnel. Together, we would work closely with the national health service trusts concerned to minimise disruption as far as possible.

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many calls the NHS Overseas Nurses Advice Line has received since it was established; and what the average cost to the NHS is per call. [84895]

Mr. Hutton [holding answer 2 December 2002]: To date the National Health Service Overseas Advice Line has received 53 calls which have required advice.

The NHS Overseas Nurses Advice Line is funded by the Department of Health. The average cost per call for this financial year will not be available until March 2003.

David Hamilton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many nurses left the NHS last year, broken down by nation of the UK. [84545]

Mr. Hutton: Information on the number of nurses leaving the national health service each year is not available. The non-medical workforce census collects data on staff in post as at 30 September each year but does not distinguish between leavers and recruits.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) publishes an annual statistical report which includes information about the number of nurses and midwives leaving the register. This data can be found on the NMC website at

Dr. Evan Harris: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how much was (a) budgeted for and (b) spent on NHS nursing and midwifery staff in each year since 1996–97 in (i) England and (ii) each NHS region; [83720]

Mr. Hutton: Information about staffing budgets is not held centrally. It is for primary care trusts, in partnership with health authorities and other local stakeholders, to determine how best to use their funds to meet national and local priorities for improving health, tackling health inequalities and modernising services.

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Funding for nurses, midwives and health visiting staff will have been made available in health authority unified allocations. Table 1 sets out these allocations for England and the average annual increase in each year.

Information outlining the expenditure on national health service nursing, midwifery and health visiting staff is shown in table 2.

Information outlining the expenditure on non-NHS nursing, midwifery and health visiting staff is shown in Table 3. The figures in table 2 include all agency staff and any other staff not directly employed by the individual NHS trusts, health authorities and primary care trusts. We are unable to disaggregate agency nursing costs.

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Table 1: England allocation and cash increase 1996–97 to 2002–03

YearAllocation (#000)Cash increase (#000)Percentage


The allocations for 1999–2000 onwards are not comparable with those for 1996–97 to 1998–99 which cover hospital and community health services (HCHS) only. 1999–2000 was the first year of unified allocations which cover HCHS, prescribing and discretionary general medical services.

Table 2: Expenditure on NHS nursing, midwifery and health visiting staff England, 1996–97 to 2000–01

Northern and Yorkshire831,340,241850,015,207902,854,418997,003,489 1,087,774,444
West Midlands647,197,186661,729,190684,544,989746,590,274809,642,109
North West908,283,904932,480,126976,794,4281,064,401,2041,148,750,339
Eastern583,429,006584,789,352 607,820,759664,906,741720,152,396
London1,109,678,665 1,147,415,7281,186,661,2731,287,889,8561,378,785,300
South East950,338,890963,640,965 1,003,409,1931,095,639,1061,181,989,752
South West625,822,737622,034,275 664,540,071725,391,300784,221,142
England Total6,294,385,9146,415,042,9086,709,865,2717,330,271,6097,902,410,872


1. Annual financial returns for NHS trusts, 1996–97 to 2000–01

2. Annual financial returns for health authorities, 1996–97 to 2000–01

3. Annual financial returns for primary care trusts, 2000–01

Table 3: Expenditure on non-NHS nursing, midwifery and health visiting staff (inc. agency, etc.)—England

Northern and Yorkshire6,028,6676,714,8337,504,7749,670,40311,687,978
West Midlands16,939,66320,265,85526,503,75732,564,52837,964,326
North West9,570,017 13,211,62117,857,45123,917,19431,022,389
Eastern14,055,474 15,719,90422,670,38030,951,97542,387,041
London108,202,417 111,628,043130,573,228180,665,901202,308,850
South East21,586,15529,963,66541,469,98852,808,57466,046,899
South West9,153,90811,136,94415,581,45518,192,82227,431,981
England Total191,496,635216,338,567272,225,162361,656,683435,431,882


1. Annual financial returns for NHS trusts, 1996–97 to 2000–01

2. Annual financial returns for health authorities, 1996–97 to 2000–01

3. Annual financial returns for primary care trusts, 2000–01

Patient Discharge

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Bethnal Green and Bow of 28 November 2002, Official Report, column 413W, on patient discharge, when he expects to publish the revisions to the hospital discharge workbook; how long the consultation stage has taken; and who has been consulted on the redrafting. [86257]

Jacqui Smith: A revised version of the hospital discharge workbook will be published shortly. As part of the review process, a number of wide-ranging stakeholder meetings have been held over the last few months with practitioners and managers, national professional and carer bodies, and with people who have been responsible for promoting good practice in their localities.

Patients Forums

Mr. Hinchliffe: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what his estimate is of the cost of recruiting the membership of patients' forums. [84885]

Mr. Lammy: It is the responsibility of the Commission for Patient and Public Involvement in Health to recruit members to patients forums. It will be for the Commission, within its available budget, to determine the cost of recruitment.

Prison Cells

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Health in what proportion of (a) young offender institutions and (b) adult prisons changes have been made to the physical cell environment to reduce ligature points. [84011]

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Hilary Benn: Cell windows and beds are considered high risk, as statistically they are more used to attach ligatures. Ligatures can however be attached to many other elements of a cell structure and installed furniture. Establishments use local funding to address individual ligature attachment points, but unless a cell has been installed as a full Xsafer cell" its efficiency in reducing ligatures cannot effectively be measured, and are therefore not monitored.

The number of safer cell installations to date is as


The Prison Service is currently working on a number of initiatives that will enable safer cell and reduced risk cell furniture to be more easily available to establishments. Work has commenced on the production of prototypes for large-scale production of safer cell furniture. The current initiative is hoped to reduce the current cost of safer cell furniture installations by approximately one third. Work is continuing with the Prison Service Industries to produce a range of furniture that is designed to reduce possible ligature attachments points. The furniture, when approved, will be available to establishments via the normal furniture supply routes.

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