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Small Grants Scheme

Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list, for each country where it has been utilised over the last two years, the grants made from the Small Grants Scheme; and what the (a) amount and (b) purpose of each grant was. [211102]

Mr. MacShane: Funds totalling £12.1 million in 2002–03 financial year and £10.2 million in 2003–04 financial year have been dispersed on projects in over 100 countries under the Small Grants Scheme. I have placed a list of the Small Grants Scheme spend 2002 to 2004 by country in the Library of the House. The Department for International Development funds the scheme. Funds are made available to civil society and religious organisations for activities that promote the development or maintain the economy of a territory outside the United Kingdom, or the welfare of its people. A breakdown of each project is not held centrally by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Srebrenica Massacres

Mr. MacDonald: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what plans he is making to mark the 10th anniversary of the Srebrenica massacres; and if he will make a statement. [212028]

Mr. MacShane: We have yet to take any final decisions on the most appropriate way to mark this important anniversary. The UK already provides public, operational and financial support to a number of projects which will leave a lasting memorial to the victims of these crimes, including the establishment of the purpose-built Potocari cemetery outside Srebrenica and the creation of a memorial room with the support of the Imperial War Museum.

The best tribute to the victims of this crime would be to bring the perpetrators to justice. The UK will continue to be at the forefront of political, diplomatic and—through EUFOR in Bosnia—operational efforts
 
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to ensure that those indicted for war crimes, in particular Radovan Karadzic, Ratko Mladic and Ante Gotovina, are brought to trial in The Hague.

Tsunami Relief

Mr. Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what changes to the allocation of (a) resources and (b) funds his Department has had to make as a consequence of the tsunami disaster. [210581]

Mr. MacShane: As soon as the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) received news of the tsunami disaster it activated its emergency crisis plan that deals with major emergencies involving British nationals overseas. Under this plan, posts in the affected region were reinforced with trained consular staff both from London and other regional posts.

Between 26 December and 24 January, the FCO sent a total of 105 extra staff to Thailand. As of 24 January, 51 of these extra staff remained in Thailand. 27 were supporting the embassy in Bangkok and 24 were manning the temporary mission in Phuket. On 26 December, a rapid deployment team of 10 FCO staff was sent out from London to the high commission in Colombo. A further eight team members were deployed between 28 and 30 December. As of 24 January, one member of this team remained in Sri Lanka.

In London, a tsunami crisis unit of 16 full-time staff providing 24 hour cover has been in operation. FCO staff have also been deployed to the Casualty Bureau in Hendon and, for a period of 10 days, to Heathrow airport.

It is far from clear as yet what the total financial cost of the consular operation will be but it will almost certainly exceed that of any recent consular crisis. The cost includes the deployment of police officers to the affected region for family liaison and forensic investigation. We expect some tsunami-related activity to continue into the next financial year.

Since October 2003 a proportion of each UK passport fee has gone towards establishing an Emergency and Disaster Reserve (EDR) which is controlled jointly by the FCO and Her Majesty's Treasury. By the end of financial year 2004–05, allowing for previous non-tsunami claims yet to be paid, there will be roughly £5 million in the EDR which we hope will be sufficient to cover the majority of the 2004–05 claim. In the event that total claims exceed the capacity of the EDR, we will need to consider how best to meet that cost, including by seeking access to the Resource Departmental Expenditure Limits Reserve.

Turkey

Tom Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with the Turkish Government on political prisoners being held in Turkey; how many political prisoners are being held in custody by the Turkish authorities; and if he will make a statement. [211050]

Mr. MacShane: Estimates of those in detention for political offences vary. The recent release of many prisoners in Turkey, as a result of the new Turkish Penal
 
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Code, has made estimation even harder. However, according to the Turkish Ministry of Justice there are currently 3,757 individuals detained for political offences". This figure includes those convicted under the Anti-Terror Law, and Articles 125, 146, 168, 169 of the current Turkish Penal Code.

The UK has made clear to the Turkish authorities that European values do not permit detention of citizens on account of their political beliefs. A package of constitutional amendments was adopted by Turkey in May 2004 that included affirmation that international human rights agreements take precedence over domestic law. The European Commission's 2004 regular report on Turkey noted that the

and that as a result

Ukraine

Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on discussions his Department has had with the Ukraine Government on EU membership. [211987]

Mr. MacShane [holding answer 2 February 2005]: We have had numerous discussions at different levels both bilaterally and through the EU Troika with the Ukrainians on strengthening EU-Ukraine relations and on President Yushchenko's long-term strategic goal of EU membership. I also discussed these issues with senior Ukrainian officials who are expected to take up ministerial posts when I represented the United Kingdom at President Yushchenko's inauguration in Kiev on 23 January.

HEALTH

Alcohol-related Accidents

Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) accident and emergency admissions and (b) ambulance call-outs resulting from incidents occurring (i) on and (ii) in the vicinity of premises licensed to sell alcohol for consumption on the premises under the Licensing Act 1964 there were in the last period for which figures are available. [212061]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The number of accident and emergency attendances that are alcohol related is not collected centrally. There were 24,845 admissions via accident and emergency to national health service hospitals in England for alcohol-related conditions during 2003–04.

Information on the number of alcohol-related ambulance call-outs is not collected centrally.

Alzheimer's

Mr. McLoughlin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many Alzheimer's disease patients are being treated in West Derbyshire; what the total spending ondrugs to treat Alzheimer's disease was in West Derbyshire in each of the last three years; what assessment he has made of the availability of drugs for
 
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moderately-severe to severe Alzheimer's disease in West Derbyshire; how much was spent by the NHS on drug treatments for advanced Alzheimer's disease patients in West Derbyshire in each of the last three years; and what measures have been taken to assist carers of patients with advanced Alzheimer's disease in West Derbyshire. [211915]

Dr. Ladyman: This information is not collected in the format requested. Drugs used for dementia as defined in the British National Formulary (BNF) section 4.11 are specifically indicated for use in dementia in Alzheimer's sufferers. The table shows the number of prescription
 
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items and net ingredient cost of all drugs used for dementia in Alzheimer's disease that were dispensed in the community in primary care trusts (PCTs) in the Derbyshire area in 2001, 2002 and 2003. It is not possible to provide information on any other prescription drugs that patients with Alzheimer's disease may receive, since information is not available on the reasons why a prescription drug is prescribed.

The information covers prescriptions that are dispensed in the community only. It does not include items dispensed in hospitals or mental health trusts where they are known to be used significantly. Prescribing practices of drugs for dementia will vary across PCTs.
Number of prescription items and net ingredient cost of all drugs for dementia that were dispensed in the community in PCTs in West Derbyshire and in England—2001, 2002 and 2003

Number of prescription items (000)
Net ingredient cost (£000)
200120022003200120022003
Amber Valley PCT0.30.70.921.859.073.1
Derbyshire Dales and South Derbyshire PCT0.20.40.613.333.749.1
High Peak and Dales PCT0.61.01.538.065.6106.7
Total West Derbyshire1.02.13.073.0158.3228.9
England122.1231.3358.211,004.620,567.131,347.5




Notes on prescribing data:
1. PCA data cover all prescription items that are dispensed in the community in England, (this covers items dispensed by community pharmacists and appliance contractors, dispensing doctors, and prescriptions submitted by prescribing doctors for items personally administered.
PCA data do not include items dispensed in hospitals/mental health trusts or private prescriptions. PCA data includes the PCT in which the drug for dementia was dispensed in.
2. Drugs for dementia are defined in the British National Formulary (BNF) section 4.11 Drugs for dementia" and include donepezil hydrochloride (Aricept), galantamine (Reminyl), memantine hydrochloride (Ebixa) and rivastigmine (Exelon).
3. Doctors, dentists or nurses write prescriptions on a prescription form. Each single item written on the form is counted as a prescription item.
4. Net ingredient cost refers to the basic cost (which the dispenser is reimbursed) of the drug before discounts and does not include any dispensing costs or fees.
Source:
Prescription cost analysis (PCA) data from the Prescription Pricing Authority.




With respect to the cost of drug treatments for patients with advanced Alzheimer's disease, according to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) records, there is one licensed product, Ebixa (memantine hydrochloride), which is indicated for the treatment of patients with moderately-severe to severe Alzheimer's disease.

Ebixa was first dispensed in the community on prescription in the last quarter (October to December) of 2002, so data prior to that are not available. The PCA data report that in 2003, around 7,600 prescription items of Ebixa were dispensed in the community in England with a net ingredient cost of 636,300, or two per cent, of the cost of all dementia drugs. Due to reasons of confidentiality, the Department does not release sub-national level prescription data where less than 50 items of a drug have been dispensed. Data on the cost of Ebixa in the Derbyshire area cannot be provided as the numbers were too small to be disclosed.

Both the Derbyshire Mental health services national health service trust and the PCTs in West Derbyshire confirm that they follow National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) appraisal guidance relating to the use of Donepezil, Rivastigmine, and Galantamine [guidance no. 19] for the treatment of patients with Alzheimer's disease.

NICE is currently reviewing this guidance, which will include an assessment of Ebixa. In the meantime, PCTs and individual trusts, when considering the funding of this treatment, are expected to use their existing prescribing arrangements and consider all the evidence available to them on the clinical effectiveness of the treatment.

NICE has not yet completed its revision of guidance No. 19 with regard to the drug Memantine, which is indicated for patients with severe Alzheimer's disease. It is a matter for individual PCTs and NHS trusts to consider whether this drug be made available in the interim period.

In terms of measures taken to assist carers of patients with advanced Alzheimer's disease in West Derbyshire, Derbyshire Dales Crossroads receives a combined amount of £95,000 per annum from:

Crossroads is a national organisation committed to providing practical support—where it is most needed—in the home. Trained care staff go into carers' homes to take over the caring tasks, giving carers a much needed break.
 
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