Previous Section Index Home Page

27 Jun 2005 : Column 1354W—continued

Departmental Relocation

Mr. Gale: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many of her Department's posts (a) have been relocated and (b) are under consideration for relocation from London to the deprived areas of the South East. [6269]

Jane Kennedy: No posts from the Department have been relocated to the South East and there are no current plans to do so.
27 Jun 2005 : Column 1355W

Digital Hearing Aids

Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many digital hearing aids (a) were fitted in 2004 and (b) have been fitted in 2005 in (i) NHS hospitals and (ii) private dispensers who are part of the public-private partnership scheme. [6365]

Mr. Byrne: The numbers of digital hearing aids fitted are shown in the table.
Where fitted20042005
National health service hospitals270,000(36)60,000
Private public partnership scheme14,000(37)21,000

(36)First quarter only.
(37)To end May.
Modernising hearing aids services programme.

Drug Rehabilitation

Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people were placed in drug rehabilitation programmes in each London borough since June 2004. [5271]

Jane Kennedy: These data are not yet available. Figures for the period April 2004 to March 2005 will be published in the autumn. Data for the period April 2003 to March 2004 can be found on the National Treatment Agency's website at 2003.04.pdf.

Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what research she has commissioned on the (a) physical causes and (b) treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy; how much public funding has been spent on such research in each of the last five years; and if she will make a statement. [4794]

Jane Kennedy: I refer the hon. Member to the reply the Under-Secretary with responsibility for care services, my hon. Friend the Member for Birmingham, Hodge Hill (Mr. Byrne) gave on 16 June 2005, Official Report, column 637W to the hon. Member for South Cambridgeshire (Mr. Lansley).

Mr. Walker: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will take steps to increase the funding for research to find treatments for Duchenne muscular dystrophy; and if she will make a statement. [6062]

Jane Kennedy [holding answer 21 June 2005]: The main agency through which the Government support medical research is the Medical Research Council (MRC). It is a long-standing and important principle, held to by successive Administrations, that the Government do not prescribe how individual research councils should distribute their resources between
27 Jun 2005 : Column 1356W
competing priorities. In 2003–04, the MRC spent some £2.4 million on research relevant to Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). In March 2004, the former Secretary of State my right hon. Friend the Member for Hamilton, North and Bellshill (John Reid), announced an award of £1.6 million over three years to fund gene therapy research for DMD. This is pioneering research and it is not possible to know in advance of completion of the preliminary work already funded by the Department whether this approach is likely to be successful. We look forward to receiving progress reports from the DMD research consortium in due course.

Edgware Hospital

Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she made of the requirement for (a) key worker housing and (b) affordable housing before the agreement was reached to sell surplus land at Edgware hospital. [5834]

Jane Kennedy: The responsibility for disposal of land at Edgware hospital lies with Barnet Primary Care Trust and they have taken into account the necessary factors including the availability of key worker or affordable housing and local planning requirements when doing so.

Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will make a statement on the availability of digital hearing aids at Edgware hospital. [5832]

Jane Kennedy: Since April 2005, all national health service audiology services in England should be routinely fitting digital hearing aids.

End-of-Life Care

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to her answer of 6 June 2005, Official Report, column 421W, on end-of-life care, what estimate she has made of the amount each primary care trust will receive in each of the next three years; and how many more people she estimates will have access to palliative care. [5601]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The money has been allocated to strategic health authorities, which are working with primary care trusts to determine how they will meet the end of life care needs of the local population. They will jointly determine how the funding is used.

Eye Tests (London)

Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many eye tests were conducted in each London health authority in each year since 1997; and how many of them were free to the user. [5281]

Jane Kennedy: The number of all eye tests that were conducted in each London health authority is not collected centrally. However, the total number of sight tests paid for by the national health service in the London strategic health authorities since 1997 is collected centrally and is shown in the table.
Strategic health authority1997–981998–991999–20002000–012001–022002–032003–04
North West London235,793223,970280,634280,936286,719279,395282,842
North Central London188,480180,171214,174224,336215,142201,480208,946
North East London254,802257,947299,614293,362294,412283,500282,725
South East London189,295187,477237,871248,497249,720242,308240,961
South West London155,014153,930206,217206,706197,540198,239202,808

1.Sight tests cannot be equated to the numbers of patients. Although most people do not come back for a sight test within the year, some patients suffering from medical conditions are advised to have re-examinations sooner.
2.With effect from 1 April 1999, the Government restored eligibility to everyone aged 60 or over regardless of income.
3.Everyone was eligible for free NHS sight tests until 1989, when eligibility was restricted to children, people on low income and benefits and people suffering from or predisposed to eye disease.

27 Jun 2005 : Column 1357W

Faith Communities

Mr. Paul Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent consultations have been carried out by her Department with representatives of faith communities; and if she will make a statement. [3229]

Jane Kennedy: The Department consulted with faith communities when producing the national service frameworks for coronary heart disease, diabetes and mental health. The Department and the national health service continue to engage faith communities in public health campaigns such as smoking cessation and organ donation. The Department also maintains close contact with a multi-faith group, which was independently formed by and comprises of representatives of a wide range of faith communities, as part of our commitment to a multi-faith approach to NHS chaplaincy.

Recent departmental consultations with faith communities include the following:

27 Jun 2005 : Column 1358W

Next Section Index Home Page