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4 Apr 2005 : Column 1095W—continued


Mr. Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people from (a) Leeds and (b) Leeds, West have completed drug addiction rehabilitation courses in each of the last 10 years. [222247]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The information is not available in the format requested.


Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Health which strategic health authorities have expressed an interest in fluoridating their water supply. [220889]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The Department is aware thatGreater Manchester strategic health authority has expressed interest in the fluoridation of water supplies.

Food Supplements Directive

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he is taking to ensure that the Food Supplements Directive does not place a disproportionate burden on small businesses. [223821]

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Miss Melanie Johnson: An assessment of the economic impact of the Food Supplements Regulations was made in the regulatory impact assessment, which was published with the national regulations implementing this directive. This included an assessment of the impact on small businesses.

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has offered to assist the industry, including small businesses, by providing technical advice on preparation of the safety dossiers that are needed for any unlisted ingredients to remain on the market. The agency has also published an up to date list of ingredients where dossiers have been submitted to the United Kingdom and other member states to ensure that dossiers are not produced unnecessarily. I have also encouraged companies to work together with respect to producing dossiers to reduce the burden on industry.

Friarage Hospital, Northallerton

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the future of the Friarage Hospital, Northallerton. [223823]

Miss Melanie Johnson: As part of the Tees Health Review, involving the independent advice of Professor Sir Ara Darzi, it was agreed that Professor Darzi would examine two additional areas to his original terms of reference. One of these areas was the work under way by the Hambleton and Richmondshire Primary Care Trust and South Tees Hospitals National Health Service Trust in relation to the Friarage Hospital.

Professor Darzi will submit his report later this year. No decision regarding the future of the Friarage Hospital has been made. Any proposals which concern changes to current services will be subject to a formal period of consultation.

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment he has made of the impact on the Friarage hospital of the Working Time Directive. [223824]

Miss Melanie Johnson: Friarage hospital is part of the South Tees hospitals national health service trust. This trust has achieved compliance with the European Working Time Directive.

Health Food Supplements

Mr. Hurst: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the number of people in England and Wales using health food supplements. [221951]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The Department have not made a recent estimate of the number of people in England and Wales using health supplements.

Health Statistics (Shrewsbury and Atcham)

Mr. Paul Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of adults were registered with a NHS dentist in Shrewsbury and Atcham in each year since 1997. [223178]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The Department does not have population figures pre-2001 for Shropshire County Primary Care Trust (PCT).
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The table shows the percentage of adults who were registered with a national health service dentist in the Shropshire county PCT area in each year since 1997.
Adult registrationsAdult populationPercentage registered

The drop in registrations between September 1997 and September 1998 is mostly attributable to the reduction in the re-registration period from two years to 15 months. The figures exclude patients treated in dental access centres (DACs) who are not registered. In 2004, there were some 375,000 episodes of treatment in the 48 DACs then in operation in England.

Hepatitis C (Parliamentary Report)

Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether his Department expects to respond to the All-Party Parliamentary Group report on Hepatitis C. [223975]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The Department is considering the report.

Hospital-acquired Conditions

Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the average cost of treating a patient with (a) MRSA and (b) pressure sores in the last year. [222960]

Miss Melanie Johnson [holding answer 18 March 2005]: The reference costs data provides unit cost information for a variety of procedures, treatments and services undertaken by the national health service in England for a given financial year. However, the costs of treating methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus" and pressure sores cannot be separately identified from the information collected centrally.

Influenza Pandemic

Dr. Gibson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to refresh stockpiles of antivirals. [223812]

Miss Melanie Johnson: Plans are in place to refresh stockpiles of antivirals in line with the expected shelf life of the drugs.

Dr. Gibson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether he plans to (a) encourage major employers to purchase antivirals for their employees and (b) encourage training of professionals to deal with an influenza pandemic. [223814]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The Department does not currently have plans to encourage employers to purchase antivirals.
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We are preparing documents to support the national health service with the impact of a 'flu pandemic. These will encourage the training of staff.

Dr. Gibson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what funding is allocated to the communications strategy in the UK influenza pandemic community plan; and if he will make a statement on the role of the media in that strategy. [223813]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The strategy is being developed and will be funded as appropriate.

The media will be a crucial mechanism for ensuring our key messages reach the full range of audiences during a flu pandemic. A communications strategy was published as an annex to the United Kingdom influenza pandemic contingency plan, which is available in the Library and can be found on the Department's website at

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when he expects the documents known as sleeping scripts, for the purpose of advising patients in the event of an influenza pandemic, to which reference is made on page 46 of the UK Influenza Pandemic Plan, to be published by NHS 24 and NHS Direct; and how frequently these scripts will be reviewed. [220984]

Miss Melanie Johnson: The sleeping scripts have been developed by national health service clinicians with input from experts at the Health Protection Agency (HPA). They have been available within NHS Direct since November 2004 and were made available to NHS24 in early 2005. All sleeping scripts are automatically reviewed on an annual basis and changes can be made immediately should any new evidence/information become apparent in the period between reviews. In the event of a pandemic, the joint HPA/NHS project group would review and amend the scripts as often as required by the Department, to ensure that updated information was incorporated.

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