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6 Dec 2004 : Column 350W—continued

Childhood Asthma

Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many children were diagnosed with asthma in (a) England, (b) Gloucestershire and (c) Stroud constituency in (i) 1974, (ii) 1980, (iii) 1990, (iv) 2000 and (v) the latest year for which figures are available. [202774]

Dr. Ladyman: The information requested is not available.

The new primary medical care contracting arrangements from April 2004 include the use of indicators and information management across specific chronic disease areas, including asthma, to deliver improved outcomes for patients. In time, we expect that this data will provide an invaluable source of information on the disease areas covered.

Eye Tests (Lancashire)

Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many free eye tests for pensioners there have been in Burnley, Pendle and Rossendale in each year since 2000. [200994]

Miss Melanie Johnson: Figures for the number of sight tests by constituency or by pensioners are not collected centrally.

The table shows the number of national health service sight tests paid by East Lancashire health authority (HA) for the years ending 31 March 2000 to 2003 and the three primary care trusts (PCTs) covering the old East Lancashire HA for the year ending 31 March 2004.
General ophthalmic services: number of sight tests paid by East Lancashire HA for patients aged 60 and over for the years ending 31 March 2000 to 2004

HA name-PCT nameNumber of sight tests for aged 60 and over (000)
1999–2000East Lancashire HA24.5
2000–01East Lancashire HA39.8
2001–02East Lancashire HA40.8
2002–03East Lancashire HA43.6
2003–04Blackburn with Darwen PCT13.3
Burnley, Pendle and Rossendale PCT19.9
Hyndburn and Ribble Valley PCT10.8
TotalEast Lancashire HA44.0

1. Eligibility for NHS sight tests was extended to patients aged 60 and over from 1 April 1999. PCTs took over responsibilities from HAs in October 2002.
2. Sight tests can not be equated to the numbers of patients. Although most people do not come back for a sight test within the year, some patients suffering from medical conditions are advised to have re-examinations sooner. However, some patients aged 60 and over will be eligible for sight tests for other reasons as well, for example, on income grounds. The classification for such patients will depend on the patient and the practitioner.

Fitness Trainers (NHS)

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether those who pay membership of private health clubs will qualify for a fitness trainer on the national health service. [201354]

6 Dec 2004 : Column 351W

Miss Melanie Johnson: The service to be provided by accredited national health service health trainers will be available to all NHS users in England and will provide advice, motivation and practical support for people to define the changes in lifestyle they want to make, what they can do and how they can access other help and services in making and sustaining changes.

Five a Day Logo

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health which (a) organisations and (b) products have adopted the Department of Health's 5 A DAY logo. [199458]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The 5 A DAY logo was launched in March 2003. To date, over 400 organisations have adopted the logo of which over 100 are commercial organisations, the remainder being national health service trusts, local authorities and not-for-profit bodies. 65 of these organisations have been granted a licence to use the 5 A DAY logo on product packaging; and between them feature the logo on over 700 products.

Well-known organisations and brands using the 5 A DAY logo include Asda, Co-op, Iceland and Aldi supermarkets, Costcutter, Nisa-Today's and T & S convenience stores, Boots' Shapers range, Tropicana fruit juice, Julian Graves health food stores, Whitworth's and Sundora dried fruit, McDonald's fruit bags, and Sodexho, Compass and Avenance caterers.

Food Poverty

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent discussions he has had on tackling food poverty. [201520]

Miss Melanie Johnson [holding answer 2 December 2004]: The consultation process for the "Choosing Health" White Paper involved discussions between departmental Ministers and a number of stakeholders, both within and outside Government, on diet and nutrition issues, including the issue of inequalities in access to a healthy diet.

"Choosing Health" has set out a range of measures for improving diet and nutrition, with an emphasis on engaging with disadvantaged communities.

Planning for the implementation of this and a number of other initiatives announced will be covered in a delivery plan for the White Paper and the food and health action plan, to be published early in 2005.

Food Supplements

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health, (1) when Ministers last met representatives of Consumers for Health Choice to discuss strategies for achieving the addition to the lists of permitted ingredients set out in the Annexes of the Food
6 Dec 2004 : Column 352W
Supplements Directive of ingredients on the United Kingdom market that are omitted from those lists; and what progress has been made in securing the addition of such ingredients to the lists; [200243]

(2) what advice his Department plans to give to enforcement authorities on the bringing of prosecutions against the manufacturers and retailers of safe food supplements which contain ingredients that become illegal under the Food Supplements (England) Regulations after July 2005; [200244]

(3) how many products he estimates will be affected by the implementation of the Food Supplements Directive and the Food Supplements (England) Regulations 2003; and what assessment he has made of the impact of the removal of food supplements by this implementation on (a) the businesses of the manufacturers and retailers of such products and (b) consumer choice. [200371]

Miss Melanie Johnson: I met with Consumers for Health Choice on 7 September 2004 to discuss the implications of the Food Supplements Directive (FSD).

Since that meeting the Health Food Manufacturers Association and Food Standards Agency (FSA) officials have met with officials from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the European Commission to discuss the implications of the FSD. It was made clear at those meetings that before further ingredients may be added to the lists in the FSD they must be assessed for safety through submission of a dossier and have received a positive opinion from the EFSA.

The United Kingdom Government has nevertheless made clear that providing an ingredient was on the market before July 2002 and a dossier has been submitted to a member state that ingredient can remain on sale in the UK pending an opinion by EFSA following its safety evaluation.

The FSA will advise enforcement authorities of those vitamins and minerals, and their permitted sources, listed in the regulations and products where derogation has been provided by the UK following submission of a dossier to a member state and where the product was on sale before July 2002. Such vitamins and minerals will be able to be sold legally in the UK after 1 August 2005 pending an opinion from the EFSA. Enforcement of the Regulation and decisions regarding prosecutions is a matter for the Authorities.

A regulatory impact assessment was carried out on the FSD and before the Food Supplements (England) Regulations 2003 were signed and laid in Parliament. This assessed the impact of the Directive on businesses and consumer choice.

The Directive and Regulation list 28 vitamins and minerals and 112 sources from which they may be derived for use in food supplements. The UK will allow additional ingredients to continue to be used as food supplements after 1 August 2005 providing they were on sale before July 2002 and a dossier containing safety data has been submitted to a member state by 12 July 2005.
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Free Personal Care

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if he will estimate the number of people in England who receive free personal care; [200597]

(2) if he will estimate the total cost for the Government to provide free personal care in England for those people whose income levels mean they are currently eligible for this care. [200598]

Dr. Ladyman: No information is held centrally on the numbers of people who receive personal care services but do not make a contribution towards the cost of those services.

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