Previous Section Index Home Page

16 Jun 2005 : Column 634W—continued

Anaesthetic Awareness

Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what procedures are used to encourage patients to report anaesthetic awareness; [2375]

(2) how many cases of anaesthetic awareness have been recorded in England in each year since 1997; [2376]

(3) what procedures are used in the NHS to detect anaesthetic awareness; and what routine checks are made in hospitals to prevent its incidence. [2377]

Jane Kennedy: There are currently no procedures to encourage specific reporting of anaesthetic awareness by patients and the Department does not routinely collect information about the number of cases.

However, the National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA) that we established in July 2001 to improve the safety of national health service patient care by promoting an open and fair culture has in place a national reporting and learning system for adverse events across the NHS. The NPSA is about to start a pilot to encourage patients to report all patient safety incidents, including those involving anaesthetic awareness.

The NPSA has also undertaken a review of the anaesthetic process. This involved taking a standard patient journey" and working through the whole process, identifying and analysing the risks. The NPSA is now in the process of identifying and prioritising areas
16 Jun 2005 : Column 635W
for action and is being assisted in its work by a clinical speciality adviser (CSA) in anaesthetics and an anaesthetic reference group.

The most important contribution to patient safety in this area is the continuous presence of a highly trained and skilled anaesthetist who has the benefit of modern equipment to deliver and monitor the patient's condition. The Association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain and Ireland, which represents more than 9,000 anaesthetists, has issued Minimum Standards for Monitoring" in recognition of the importance of monitoring the patient throughout an anaesthetic. The Association also launched its revised guidelines, Checking Anaesthetic Equipment", in 2004. The guidelines were developed jointly with the Royal College of Anaesthetists and their application by all anaesthetic staff will help to improve patient safety.


John Hemming: To ask the Secretary of State for Health on what the £12 million that has been made available for monitoring the use of antibiotics is being spent. [4593]

Jane Kennedy: As part of the clinical pharmacist initiative, we are providing £12 million over three years to support hospital clinical pharmacists in monitoring the use of antibiotics in relation to local policies. The funding is given to acute trusts via primary care trusts and the acute trusts decide how to use the money. This is frequently used to support a hospital clinical pharmacist.

Antimicrobial Strategy and Action Plan

John Hemming: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans the Department has to update the June 2000 Antimicrobial Strategy and Action Plan. [4592]

Jane Kennedy: We do not plan to revise the United Kingdom Antimicrobial Strategy and Action Plan" asthe aims and objectives are being taken forward by the Specialist Advisory Committee on Antimicrobial Resistance.

Arm's Length Bodies

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the total budget for arm's-length bodies contained within the Department's review of arm's length bodies is for 2005–06; and what this figure was in (a) 2004–05 and (b) 2003–04. [3358]

Jane Kennedy: The recurrent operating costs for the Department's arm's length bodies (ALBs) for the years in question are shown in the table.
£ million

1.2003–04 costs include 2004–05 costs of the Commission for Healthcare Audit and Inspection and the Commission for Social Care Inspection since these bodies were in start-up mode in 2003–04.
2.2004–05 costs increased because of taking on of new services, new ALBs and ALBs coming fully on stream.
3.2005–06 costs do not include £50 million of non-recurrent costs.

16 Jun 2005 : Column 636W


Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many cases of arrhythmia were treated by (a) the Acute Trust and (b) community trusts, including GP services, in Gloucestershire in the last year for which figures are available. [4342]

Mr. Byrne: Information on numbers of arrhythmia cases treated is collected centrally by trust, but not for general practitioner services. Figures for community trusts in Gloucestershire are between one and five and due to reasons of confidentiality have been suppressed. The number of cases of arrhythmia that were treated at Gloucestershire hospitals national health service trust in 2003–04 are shown in the table.
Finished consultant episodes with a primary diagnosis of arrhythmia, which indicates the patient was attending specifically for treatment of their arrhythmia93
Finished consultant episodes with an arrhythmia diagnosis code recorded in any of the diagnosis fields—arrhythmia codes might occur in secondary fields if they are being treated as part of an overall cardiology problem261

1.A finished consultant episode (FCE) is defined as a period of admitted patient care under one consultant within one healthcare provider. Please note that the figures do not represent the number of patients, as a person may have more than one episode of care within the year.
2.All Diagnoses count of episodes—these figures represent a count of all FCE's where the diagnosis was mentioned in any of the 14 (seven prior to 2002–03) diagnosis fields in a hospital episode statistics (HES) record.
3.The primary diagnosis is the first of up to 14 (seven prior to 2002–03) diagnosis fields in the HES data set and provides the main reason why the patient was in hospital.
4.Secondary diagnoses—as well as the primary diagnosis, there are up to 13 (six prior to 2002–03) secondary diagnosis fields in HES that show other diagnoses relevant to the episode of care.
5.ICD-10 diagnosis codes for arrhythmia are:
147.0 Re-entry ventricular arrhythmia
149.0 Ventricular fibrillation and flutter
149.1 Atrial premature depolarization
149.2 Junctional premature depolarization
149.3 Ventricular premature depolarization
149.4 Other and unspecified premature depolarization
149.5 Sick sinus syndrome
149.8 Other specified cardiac arrhythmias
149.9 Cardiac arrhythmia, unspecified
P29.1 Neonatal cardiac dysrhythmia
6.Figures have not been adjusted for shortfalls in data (i.e. the data are ungrossed). HES, Health and Social Care Information Centre


Mr. Davey: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what training is provided to (a) doctors, (b) nurses and (c) other healthcare professionals in treating and caring for those with autism; and what funding has been allocated for the treatment of autism in the 2005–06 financial year. [3162]

16 Jun 2005 : Column 637W

Mr. Byrne: The training of doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals in treating and caring for those with autism is a matter for the relevant professional bodies. Overall, in 2004–05, the national health service spent £3.6 billion on training. Information about funding allocations is not held centrally. It is for local NHS organisations to decide how resources should be allocated between services, taking account of local circumstances and priorities.

Barnet Chase Farm Hospital

Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will make a statement on activity levels at Barnet Chase Farm hospital in (a) the last month and (b) each of the last three years. [3252]

Jane Kennedy: The reported activity levels over the last few years for Barnet and Chase Farm hospital are shown in the following table.
Elective admissionsNon-elective admissions
April 20052,8612,924

These figures are for all general and acute specialties and are sourced from the Department's monthly monitoring returns.

Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what she expects the capacity of the new surgery unit at Chase Farm hospital to be; when she expects it to be operating at, or near to, that capacity; when she expects it to open; and if she will make a statement. [3269]

Jane Kennedy: North Central London Strategic Health Authority have advised that the surgicentre will have a capacity of 3000 cases a year and anticipates it to be operational later this month.

The surgicentre will include orthopaedic in-patient services, general day cases, and endoscopies. It will provide an elective service, which will not be affected by emergency activity.

Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will make a statement on the financial position of Barnet Chase Farm Hospital Trust. [3271]

Jane Kennedy: Subject to the process of audit and final accounts, the trust broke even in 2004–05. It has yet to agree a financial plan for 2005–06, which would enable it to achieve a balanced position. North London Strategic Health Authority is working closely with Barnet and Chase Farm Hospitals National Health Service Trust and its primary care trusts to achieve that end.

Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will make a statement on standards of cleaning at Barnet hospital. [3267]

Jane Kennedy: As part of the patient environment action team's inspection programme Barnet and Chase Farm Hospitals National Health Service Trust was assessed in 2005 as acceptable—from a five-point scale
16 Jun 2005 : Column 638W
which runs through excellent, good, acceptable, poor or unacceptable.

Next Section Index Home Page