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Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what performance standard has been set for processing an application by the General Social Care Council; how long it has taken on average in the last period for which information is available; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many patients have been referred to genito-urinary medicine clinics in each year since 1997; and what proportion were given an appointment within 48 hours. 
Miss Melanie Johnson: Genitourinary medicine (GUM) clinics provide open access patient care and patients do not have to be referred to them. The number of attendances at GUM clinics between 1997 and 2003 are shown in the table. Waiting times information are not collected centrally for the years in question. Results from a recent survey of GUM waiting times, GUM waiting times audit: May 2004, are available from the Health Protection Agency's website at www.hpa.org.uk.
Tony Lloyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) when the business case was presented for the Greater Manchester Surgical Unit, Trafford to (a) the board of the relevant strategic health authority and (b) the respective boards of the Greater Manchester primary care trust; and when that business case was approved by these bodies; 
Miss Melanie Johnson [holding answer 8 December 2004]: The Greater Manchester surgical centre will make a notable improvement on waiting times and waiting lists in Manchester. A range of surgical procedures will be undertaken at the centre including primary knee and hip replacements and minor surgery.
|HA/PCT||199697 allocation(33)||199798 allocation(33)||199899 allocation(33)||19992000 allocation(33)||200001 allocation(33)|
|Central Liverpool PCT||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|North Liverpool PCT||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|South Liverpool PCT||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|HA/PCT||200102 allocation(33)||200203 allocation(33)||200304 allocation(33)||200405 allocation(33)||200506 allocation(33)|
|Central Liverpool PCT||n/a||n/a||286,884||321,165||358,315|
|North Liverpool PCT||n/a||n/a||118,120||132,316||147,710|
|South Liverpool PCT||n/a||n/a||100,413||110,029||120,103|
Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what research he has evaluated on the introduction of a national campaign on sexual health as set out in the White Paper, Choosing Health, Cm 6374, paragraph 15. 
Miss Melanie Johnson: A comprehensive review of research about sexual health campaigns, undertaken for the Department in 2002, analysed the benefits of a broad spectrum of public information campaigns. In the context of the White Paper, Choosing Health, this review is being updated to inform the development of the new campaign.
Miss Melanie Johnson: Information is not available for most healthcare associated infections, but data for methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) blood stream infections are routinely available as the number of cases in each acute national health service trust and as the number of cases per 1,000 bed days. A comparison of MRSA rates for April 2003 to March 2004 with MRSA rates for April 2002 to March 2003 showed that rates had fallen in 45 of 173 acute NHS trusts in England.
Mr. John Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many of the MRSA cases reported in 200304 at Birmingham Heartlands and Solihull NHS Hospital Trust resulted in (a) death, (b) loss of physical ability or limbs and (c) enduring weeping wounds; and what the figures were in the previous two years. 
Mr. Jon Owen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many independent sector treatment centres have contacts with the NHS; and what assessment he has made of their impact on (a) patient care and (b) quality of life; 
Mr. Hutton: Seven contracts for independent sector treatment centres (ISTCs) have been signed. More are expected to be signed shortly and all will be subject to review of their outcomes. The additional 250,000 patients ISTCs will be treating each year by the end of 2005 will help improve the quality of life for patients who previously may have had to wait longer for treatment.
ISTCs have contributed to the 12 per cent., waiting list reductions over the past 12 months highlighted in the Chief Executive's report to the national health service (December 2004). Mobile magnetic resonance imaging units are also helping to speed up diagnosis and treatment for many patients.
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