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17 Mar 2003 : Column 554W—continued

Hospital Hygiene

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for East Worthing and Shoreham (Tim Loughton) of 26 February, 2003, Official Report, column 629W, on hospital hygiene, whether the handwashing provision in existing hospital buildings will be measured against the recommendations from NHS Estates for new buildings. [101950]

Mr. Lammy: National health service trust chief executives are responsible for ensuring adequate infection control measures. Infection control teams assist them in this; they will be actively involved in developing policies and monitoring practice. They will use their professional judgment to assess existing facilities and may use NHS Estates' guidelines to help them do so.

17 Mar 2003 : Column 555W

Learning Disability Boards

Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what action he is taking to ensure that local learning disability boards communicate their proceedings to local interested parties; and what plans he has to issue guidance to them on this matter. [103088]

Jacqui Smith: Learning disability partnership boards were set up as a key part of the arrangements for implementing the White Paper, "Valuing People: A New Strategy for Learning Disability for the 21st Century" (Cm 5086), published in March 2001. The role and functions of these boards were described in guidance issued in August 2001 (HSC 2001/016; LAC(2001)23).

The role of partnership boards is broadly to create strong local partnerships between providers of services, learning disabled people and family carers. Their aim is to develop local strategies to improve the opportunities for learning disabled people to be included as fully as possible in society and have greater independence and choice in their lives.

We hope that partnership boards will try to raise the profile of learning disability issues in their local areas, and to encourage their members, such as local authorities and primary care trusts, to do the same. This would support strongly the aim of greater inclusion of learning disabled people. We would therefore encourage boards to let local people know about their activities.

It would not be appropriate to issue specific guidance on this matter, which is clearly a matter for local decision. However, the valuing people support team, which has been set up to promote good practice and share practical experience across the country, has given practical advice to boards in its newsletters of July 2002 and February 2003 on making meetings available to the public. We support these messages. The support team website is at

Mental Health

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what training is available to NHS staff responding to the mental health needs of (a) current and (b) former servicemen and women. [101074]

Jacqui Smith: The mental health needs of current servicemen and women are met under the auspices of the Ministry of Defence, who are also responsible for ensuring that military and medical personnel receive appropriate training. The national health service provides services, by trained staff, to former service personnel alongside the general public according to their needs. Recent additional investment in mental health services and a comprehensive programme of modernisation will ensure that all those who have mental health needs are able to access appropriate treatment more quickly. Further information about this is available on the Department of Health web site at Additional guidance for general practitioners first issued following the events in the USA on 11 September 2001 was re-issued last year; this specifically draws attention to the needs of service personnel.

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Northwich Park Hospital

Mr. Gareth Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many patients have been treated in (a) the accident and emergency unit at Northwick Park Hospital and (b) in total at Northwick Park Hospital, broken down by clinical speciality, in each of the last five years. [100597]

Mr. Hutton: The information requested is collected by National Health Service trust and not by individual hospital.

Northwick Park Hospital was part of Northwick Park and St. Marks NHS Trust until 1999, when the Trust merged with Central Middlesex Hospital NHS Trust to form North West London Hospitals NHS Trust. Figures for Northwick Park and St. Marks NHS Trust for 1997–98 and 1998–99 are shown in Table 1.

Table 2 shows figures for North West London Hospitals NHS Trust from 1999–2000 to 2001–02. For consistency, figures for 1997–98 and 1998–99 are shown for Northwick Park and St. Marks NHS Trust and Central Middlesex Hospital NHS Trust combined.

Table 1: Northwick Park and St. Marks NHS Trust only.

Main Specialty1997–981998–99
Not known456410
General Surgery7,0508,096
Trauma and Orthopaedics3,6154,125
Oral Surgery333339
Plastic Surgery
Accident and Emergency5811,109
Pain Management421
General Medicine5,9825,818
Thoracic Medicine227131
Infectious Diseases1,0701,169
Genito-urinary Medicine
Medical Oncology
Clinical Neuro-Physiology
Geriatric Medicine3920
Obstet for Patients using a hospital bed or del facilities6,0715,691
Midwife Episodes
Mental Illness(8)
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry(8)(8)
Blood Transfusion

17 Mar 2003 : Column 557W

Table 2: Central Middlesex Hospital NHS Trust and Northwick Park & St. Marks NHS Trust 1997–98 and 1998–99
North West London Hospitals NHS Trust 1999–00 to 2001–02 Finished Consultant Episodes—Count of In Year Admissions

Main speciality1997–981998–991999–20002000–012001–02
Not known457413(8)67
General Surgery8,7249,5489,2047,5008,233
Trauma and Orthopaedics4,8255,3745,0134,0883,844
Oral Surgery1,4841,6041,426594389
Plastic Surgery003421(8)
Accident and Emergency5811,1099162,0820
Pain Management0421391315183
General Medicine6,0065,8286,2686,7757,204
Cardiology2,011 1,6691,4191,2071,135
Thoracic Medicine489387265129452
Infectious Diseases1,0701,1691,0941,0741,364
Genito-urginary Medicine141310(8)0
Medical Oncology7(8)(8)(8)6
Clinical Neuro-physiology(8)(8)(8)00
Geriatric Medicine205108931712
Obstet for patients using a hospital bed or Del facilities9,6458,9418,4363,559161
Mid Wife Episodes004321689287
Mental Illness0(8)000
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry(8)(8)(8)(8)0
Blood Transfusion(8)0000

(8) Due to reasons of confidentiality, figures below 5 have been suppressed.


1. (RAU) Central Middlesex Hospital NHS Trust and (RFZ) Northwick Park and St. Marks Trust merged to form (RV8) North West London Hospitals NHS Trust with effect from the 1999–2000 data year.

2. A FCE is defined as a period of patient care under one consultant in one health care provider. The figures do not represent the number of patients, as one person may have several episodes within the year.

3. Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) are compiled from data sent by over 300 NHS Trusts in England. The Department of Health and I beg to move, liaise closely with these organisations in order to ensure that data quality is enhanced wherever possible. Inevitably, some shortcomings remain, but our goal is to minimise inaccuracies and bring about improvement over time.


Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), Department of Health

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