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15 Jun 2005 : Column 515W—continued


Mr. Davey: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps have been taken and what plans she has to encourage people (a) to exercise and (b) to lead healthy lifestyles. [3163]

Caroline Flint: Choosing Activity: a physical activity action plan", was published on 9 March 2005. The plan brings together all the commitments relating to physical activity in the Public Health White Paper, Choosing Health: Making healthy choices easier", as well as further activity across Government, which will contribute to increasing levels of physical activity. This represents a cross-Government plan to co-ordinate action aimed at increasing levels of physical activity across the whole population—as recommended in Game Plan : A Strategy for delivering Government's sport and physical activity objectives", published by the Department of Culture Media and Sport and the Prime Ministers' strategy unit in 2002. Work is already under way to support the physical activity action plan, which includes:
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The Department also published Delivering Choosing Health: Making Healthier Choices Easier" on 9 March. This overarching delivery plan will help more people make more healthy choices and reduce health inequalities, in particular through:

Macular Degeneration

Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what research is being undertaken into dry macular degeneration. [2564]

Mr. Byrne: The main agency through which the Government support medical and clinical research is the Medical Research Council (MRC). The MRC is an independent body funded by the Department of Trade and Industry via the Office of Science and Technology.

In 2002–03, the latest year for which figures are available, the MRC spent £5.9 million on vision research. This research includes a project on genetic susceptibility to age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The project aims to identify the genetic factors involved in AMD.

The Department funds research to support policy and to provide the evidence needed to underpin quality improvement and service development in the national health service and, through its health technology assessment programme, is undertaking a systematic review into the cost effectiveness of screening programmes for both wet and dry AMD.

Over 75 per cent. of the Department's total expenditure on health research is devolved to and managed by NHS organisations. Details of individual projects including a number concerned with AMD can be found on the national research register at:

Medical Practice Funding (Shropshire)

Daniel Kawczynski: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many medical practices in the Shropshire County Primary Care Trust area are awaiting funding for relocation. [3189]

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Ms Rosie Winterton: The information requested is not held centrally.

Mental Capacity Act

Mr. Leigh: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she expects to make available to Parliament the guidelines for the implementation of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 which are to be sent to all hospitals. [3251]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The Mental Capacity Act will be accompanied by a code of practice. A draft code was laid before Parliament in September 2004. The revised draft will be subject to formal consultation in 2006 and the aim is to have the final code ready for implementation of the Act by April 2007.

National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence

Mr. Havard: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what advice she will give to commissioning authorities on the continued use and funding of licensed cancer drugs affected by the delay in their appraisal by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. [1999]

Jane Kennedy: In 1999, the Department issued Health Service Circular 1999/176, which asks national health service bodies to continue with local arrangements for the managed introduction of new technologies where guidance from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has not yet been issued. These arrangements should include an assessment of the available evidence.

NHS Finance

Mr. Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list for each primary care trust its expenditure in the last financial year on out-of-area treatment for (a) people with a learning disability and (b) people with mental health problems. [3526]

Mr. Byrne [holding answer 14 June 2005]: This information is not held centrally.

NHS Management Salaries (Hertfordshire)

Mr. Walker: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many managers working in Hertfordshire NHS trusts receive pay in excess of £100,000 per annum; and if she will make a statement. [3219]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The information requested is not collected centrally. However, this information is published in each trust's annual accounts, which can be accessed via each trust's individual website or by telephoning the individual trust who will send a copy out in the post.

NHS Staff

Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent estimate she has made of the impact of staff availability on NHS capacity; and if she will make a statement. [3071]

Mr. Byrne: There has been a significant increase in national health service staffing with over 1.3 million people employed in September 2004, an increase of 272,000 or 26 per cent. since 1997 with greater devolution to NHS organisations in line with Shifting
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the Balance of Power. The approach to workforce planning is changing with greater reliance on credible local plans that maximise workforce capacity to support delivery. Delivering the NHS Improvement Plan: the Workforce Contribution highlights strategic workforce issues, which primary care trusts and strategic health authorities are asked to ensure are considered in their local delivery plans. This includes maintaining adequate staffing levels to maximise NHS capacity to deliver services.


Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what action her Department has taken to implement the recommendations of the Health Select Committee regarding (a) assisting people who suffer with obesity and (b) encouraging people to take action to stop them being obese. [4581]

Caroline Flint: The Health Select Committee's report made a major contribution to the development of our proposals for action in the White Paper, Choosing Health", published in November 2004. Obesity was one of the six overarching priorities of the White Paper and we were able to address very nearly all of the Committee's recommendations.

The White Paper delivery plan, Delivering Choosing Health", together with national plans focusing on nutrition, Choosing a Better Diet", and physical activity, Choosing Activity", published in March 2005, set out the detail of how we will deliver our White Paper proposals and how they will contribute to delivery of the public service agreement target on obesity.

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