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12 Jan 2005 : Column 526W—continued

Food Standards Agency

Mr. Liddell-Grainger: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much the Food Standards Agency spent on information leaflets in (a) 2002, (b) 2003 and (c) 2004. [206550]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The Food Standards Agency works to the financial year. For the year commencing 1 April 2002 and ending on 31 March 2003, £503,958 was spent on information leaflets. For 2003–04, £193,219 was spent and for 2004–05 to date, £96,879.
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General Practitioners (Derbyshire)

Mr. McLoughlin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has for additional general practitioner surgeries in (a) the West Derbyshire constituency and (b) Derbyshire. [207445]

Dr. Ladyman: It is for primary care trusts (PCTs) to commission health services to meet the needs of their local populations in partnership with strategic health authorities and other local stakeholders. It is the responsibility of PCTs locally to determine how best "to use their funds to meet national and local priorities".

Green Spaces

Paddy Tipping: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent discussions he has held with (a) the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and (b) the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister on the role of natural green spaces in the forthcoming delivery plan on physical activity. [207087]

Miss Melanie Johnson: Both I and departmental officials meet regularly with colleagues from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM) to discuss a range of issues. Both Departments
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are members of the activity co-ordination team (ACT), which I chair jointly with my right hon. Friend the Minister for Sport (Richard Caborn). ACT is co-ordinating Government action on increasing participation in physical activity and sport.

DEFRA and ODPM were both involved in the discussions leading up to publication of the Public Health White Paper, "Choosing Health, Making healthy choices easier", and have an important contribution to make to the delivery plan for physical activity.

The Department is fully involved in the preparations for delivery of the ODPM Public Service Agreement Target 8, concerning cleaner, safer and greener public spaces.

Health Staff (Tyne and Wear)

Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) nursing, (b) professional, (c) technical and (d) medical staff were employed in (i) the Tyne and Wear Strategic Health Authority area and (ii) the Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals Trust in each year since 1999. [207339]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The information requested is shown in the following table.
NHS hospital, public health medicine and community health services: Medical and dental staff and professionally qualified clinical staff in the Northumberland, Tyne and Wear strategic health authority area and the Newcastle Upon Tyne hospitals NHS trust as at 30 September in each year since 1999.

Q09 Northumberland, Tyne and Wear
Medical and dental staff2,4072,5582,6222,7452,861
Qualified nursing, midwifery and health visiting staff11,08111,09811,90612,33212,455
Qualified scientific, therapeutic and technical staff3,1433,2913,4283,8884,155
Of which:
Allied health professionals1,4801,5711,6111,6961,832
Other qualified STT1,6631,7201,8172,1922,323
Ambulance staff617512512541545
Of which:
RTD Newcastle Upon Tyne hospitals NHS trust
Medical and dental staff9671,0731,1361,1731,190
Qualified nursing, midwifery and health visiting staff3,3983,2133,5393,6163,613
Qualified scientific, therapeutic and technical staff1,0101,0091,0751,3571,441
Of which:
Allied health professionals394394417383419
Other qualified STT6166156589741,022

Department of Health Non-Medical Workforce Census
Department of Health Medical and Dental Workforce Census

Hospital Beds (Dorset)

Mr. Letwin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what contingency plans for the provision of hospital beds are in place for the winter in NHS trusts in Dorset. [207593]

Ms Rosie Winterton: In line with our policy of "Shifting the Balance of Power", it is now for primary care trusts (PCTs), in partnership with strategic health authorities (SHAs) and other local stakeholders, to plan, develop and improve services for local people. We recognise that health services are better when management is devolved to the frontline. Within the framework set out in the "NHS Plan" and other policy documents, PCTs, with their specialised knowledge of the local community, are effectively able to manage and improve local services.

All national health service trusts, PCTs and social services authorities in the Dorset and Somerset area have developed escalation plans for winter 2004–05, which describe how the organisation will respond to an increase in demand above normal operating levels, but below the level of demand which would be declared a major incident.

The Dorset and Somerset SHA will produce, on a weekly basis, an analysis of the information drawn from weekly situation reports, so that comparative data for
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key pressure indicators can be recorded and analysed. This analysis will be circulated to all organisations in the local health community.

Hospital-acquired Infections

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what assessment he has made of the prevalence of hospital-acquired infections in (a) NHS community hospitals and (b) other NHS residential settings in the community; [207617]

(2) if he will publish the surveillance data on rates of MRSA in community hospitals; and if he will make a statement; [207618]

(3) how many NHS patients in (a) NHS community hospitals, (b) intermediate care beds and (c) NHS community settings contracted (i) MRSA and (ii) other hospital acquired infections in the last period for which figures are available. [207620]

Miss Melanie Johnson [holding answer 10 January 2005]: The mandatory surveillance of hospital-acquired infections, including Methicillin Resistant "Staphylococcus aureus", is carried out only in national health service acute trusts. Data are not collected centrally for community hospitals, intermediate care beds or NHS community/residential settings.

Illegal Meat

Charles Hendry: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what punishments may be imposed upon those found guilty of selling or trading in dirty, diseased and illegal cuts of meat; what assessment he has made of the suitability of the punishments; and what further action he is taking to tackle such trade. [207478]

Miss Melanie Johnson: It is an offence to contravene Article 14 of Regulation (EC) No 178/2002 by placing any food on the market if it is unsafe. In the Crown court, the penalty for doing so is an unlimited fine and/or a maximum of two years' imprisonment. In the magistrates court, the corresponding penalty is a fine of up to £20,000 and/or a maximum of six months' imprisonment. It is also possible to prosecute some such activities for conspiracy to defraud under the Theft Act 1968, for which the penalty is an unlimited fine and/or a maximum of 10 years' imprisonment.

In addition, confiscation orders can be imposed where a defendant has been convicted in the Crown court, or committed there either for sentence or for the issue of a confiscation order to be considered. The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 sets out the strict rules to be met on the procedure, and the requirements to be met, which vary with the circumstances.

The Food Standards Agency is assessing the suitability of the penalties, following consultation with stakeholders on the recommendations of the Waste Food Task Force.

The Food Standards Agency has, with its partners in other Government Departments and enforcement bodies, a wide-ranging action plan to tackle meat crime. This action plan includes measures that have tightened
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the legislation on animal by-products, improved and provided extra resources for enforcement, and raised the profile of meat crime among sentencers.

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