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19 Jan 2005 : Column 1031W—continued

MRI Scanners

Mr. Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many hours per day MRI scanners were (a) in use for NHS neurology services and (b) manned by suitably qualified staff in the last period for which figures are available; and what proportion of this time was designated for MS diagnostic purposes; [208846]

(2) what requirements are placed by strategic health authorities on primary care trusts to arrange access to MRI scans for those suspected of having multiple sclerosis; [208850]

(3) against what benchmarks performance in terms of access to specialist multiple sclerosis neurological services is managed. [208851]

Dr. Ladyman: The Department does not collect information on the day-to-day operational management of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanners. Qualified staff operate MRI scanners when they are in use.
19 Jan 2005 : Column 1032W

The Department works with strategic health authorities to assess the demand for diagnostic services such as MRI to benefit all groups of patients including those suspected of having multiple sclerosis (MS).

The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has issued clinical guidelines on the management of MS across primary, secondary tertiary and social care settings. The guideline focuses on the quality and configuration of services for people with MS and their carers, and includes specific recommendations around access to specialist neurological services. Local health communities are expected to review their existing service provision for people with MS against the guidelines.


Mr. George Osborne: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list the (a) newspapers and (b) periodicals taken by his Department in each year since 1997; and how much the Department spent on each in each year. [207646]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The Department's library and information service is responsible for central purchasing of newspapers and periodicals for library use and for retention by individual units. Suppliers, who have been chosen by competitive tendering every three to five years are used. New supply contracts were awarded in October 2001, for the supply of newspapers and weekly magazines and for journals.

Expenditure details are kept on a central system but it does not differentiate between expenditure on newspapers and periodicals.

Total expenditure for the period is:

A list of current newspaper and journal titles taken by the Department's library has been placed in the Library.

Southwark Primary Care Trust

Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many patients in the Southwark Primary Care Trust area referred urgently with suspected breast cancer waited for more than two weeks for an out-patient appointment in each reporting period since January 2002; and if he will make a statement. [207894]

Dr. Ladyman: The information requested is shown in the table.
19 Jan 2005 : Column 1033W

Breast cancer waiting times following urgent referral
Urgent referrals received within 24 hours



NHS trust

Percentage compliance with the two week standard

Total referrals seen during the quarter
Number of patients seen during the quarter by a specialist after 14 days of the decision to refer by their general practitioner
Q22004–05Guys and St. Thomas' Hospital NHS Trust1001200
Q12004–05Guys and St. Thomas' Hospital NHS Trust1001450
Q42003–04Guys and St. Thomas' Hospital NHS Trust1001440
Q32003–04Guys and St. Thomas' Hospital NHS Trust1001040
Q22003–04Guys and St. Thomas' Hospital NHS Trust100920
Q12003–04Guys and St. Thomas' Hospital NHS Trust100870
Q42002–03Guys and St. Thomas' Hospital NHS Trust100720
Q32002–03Guys and St. Thomas' Hospital NHS Trust100830
Q22002–03Guys and St. Thomas' Hospital NHS Trust100850
Q12002–03Guys and St. Thomas' Hospital NHS Trust96.9652
Q22004–05King's College Hospital NHS Trust96.9711
Q12004–05King's College Hospital NHS Trust100700
Q42003–04King's College Hospital NHS Trust100970
Q32003–04King's College Hospital NHS Trust1001000
Q22002–03King's College Hospital NHS Trust100960
Q12002–03King's College Hospital NHS Trust100680

1. Data available from March 2002 to September 2004
2004—Cancer Waiting Times Database—prior to this the data was collected via the QMCW Korner return.