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Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many couples have been funded for (a) one, (b) two and (c) more than two cycles of in vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatment by (i) North Hampshire Primary Care Trust and (ii) primary care trusts in the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Strategic Health Authority area in each year since 200001; how many couples she expects will receive funding for (A) one and (B) more than one cycle of IVF treatment in 200506 from (1) North Hampshire Primary Care Trust and (2) primary care trusts in the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Strategic Health Authority area; if she will make additional resources available to primary care trusts to support the provision of IVF treatment; and if she will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint [holding answer 21 June 2005]: Information about the number of patients receiving national health service infertility treatment is not collected centrally. The primary responsibility for the provision of these services rests with the NHS at local level. The consideration that primary care trusts give to this is part of the range of factors that they take into account, in liaison with local health bodies and patient groups, in deciding their policy on the provision of treatment services for their locality. This policy will, quite rightly, reflect local health needs and priorities.
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the financial deficits were (a) at the end of the last financial year and (b) for the most recent period for which figures are available of (i) the East Sussex hospitals trust, (ii) the Eastbourne Downs primary care trust and (iii) the county healthcare crust. 
Caroline Flint: The latest year for which audited data on the financial position of national health service organisations are available is 200304. The financial position for East Sussex hospitals NHS trust, Eastbourne Downs primary care trust (PCT) and East Sussex county healthcare NHS trust is shown in the following table.
|East Sussex hospitals NHS trust||(1,787,000)|
|Eastbourne Downs PCT||(3,533,000)|
|East Sussex county healthcare NHS trust||(1,025,000)|
Caroline Flint: The Food Standards Agency (FSA) only holds data centrally on the nutrition qualifications of those working in nutrition posts. The FSA employs eight registered public health nutritionists working as nutritionists within its nutrition division. They are registered with the Nutrition Society and represent 16 per cent. of employees in the division. In addition, the FSA's nutrition division includes a further 12 employees with qualifications in nutrition, making a total of 20 nutritionists or 39 per cent. of the division staff. A further registered nutritionist and three others with qualifications in nutrition are employed in the FSA's offices in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Taken all together, these 24 nutritionists represent three per cent. of FSA employees. The FSA does not employ any registered dieticians as dieticians.
The Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN), an advisory committee of independent experts, also provides advice to the FSA and other Government Agencies and Departments on nutrition matters.
Caroline Flint: The Food Standards Agency's role, intentions and targets on eating for health are set out in its strategic plan for 200510, Putting consumers first". This was published last December and a copy is available in the Library.
Dr. Iddon: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 7 June 2005, Official Report,column 527W, on food labelling/supplements, (1) whether she plans to meet representatives of the health food sector prior to the ruling of the European Court of Justice in relation to the Food Supplements Directive; 
(2) when she next expects to meet Commissioner Kyprianou; what plans she has to discuss with the Commissioner the objectives of the United Kingdom for the future regulation of food supplements; and if she will make a statement; 
The objectives of the United Kingdom for future regulation of food supplements are dependent on the ruling from the ECJ. When we have the ruling, the Government will consider what further discussions with the European Commissioner are required. Preservation of consumer choice remains one of several objectives in
27 Jun 2005 : Column 1360W
the regulation of food supplements. Other objectives include consumer safety and the promotion of free trade.
Mr. Byrne: The Department have already provided a flexible framework for primary care trusts to plan, commission and develop primary care services that offer improved access and capacity for patients and greater responsiveness to the needs of their communities. Improved contractual arrangements for general practice have been agreed with the medical profession and these will be kept under review. The Department remains committed to ensuring that general practitioners can play a full part in commissioning or providing appropriate health services for their patients.
We are proposing to launch a White Paper which will cover the provision of care outside of a secondary care setting including care in general practice. This will be informed by a major consultation with the public, patients, the professions and staff on the future development of hospital services to meet the needs of patients.
Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what minimum standards of cover are laid down by her Department for out-of-hours general practitioner services in England; and how these standards are monitored. 
Mr. Byrne: The Department's aim is to ensure that all patients can be assured of high quality, responsive and consistent out-of-hours services wherever they live. That is why we have put in place the quality requirements, which set minimum standards for the delivery of out-of-hours care. Primary care trusts and strategic health authorities must performance-manage the provider to ensure that these requirements are met.
Caroline Flint: There have not been any recent European Commission proposals on genetically modified (GM) foods. Regulations controlling GM foods were agreed in 2003 and came into force in April 2004. No representations have been made to the European Commission.
Mr. Burns: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what discussions she has had to facilitate the merger of the Commission for Social Care Inspection with the Healthcare Commission; what progress is being made; and if she will make a statement. 
Jane Kennedy [holding answer 22 June 2005]: I have met the chairs of both the Commission for Social Care Inspection and the Healthcare Commission to discuss the merger and we are now considering how best to take the merger forward in the context of the wider review of regulation in social care and health announced in March.
Mr. Burns: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will publish her Department's cost assessment of the merger of the Commission for Social Care Inspection with the Healthcare Commission; and if she will make a statement. 
Jane Kennedy [holding answer 22 June 2005]: The merger of the Healthcare Commission and the Commission for Social Care Inspection is expected to generate efficiencies and economies of scale, which contribute to the delivery of savings to be attained across all of the Department's arm's length bodies.
Mr. Burns: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether primary legislation will be required to merge the Commission for Social Care Inspection with the Healthcare Commission; and if she will make a statement. 
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