Mr. Hands: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many people were employed by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence in each of the last five years; and in what capacity; 
Mr. Hands: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what guidance her Department issues to NHS trusts relating to the provision of treatment (a) prior to and (b) during a National Institute for Clinical Excellence appraisal. 
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.
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many calls to NHS Direct about access to an NHS dentist there were in each month since January 2004 in England, broken down by (a) emergency, (b) urgent, (c) routine and (d) other calls. 
|Other (not known)
In April 2003, the NHS security management service was created and assumed responsibility for the issue of tackling violence against NHS staff. In November 2003, a new national reporting system for physical assaults against NHS staff was introduced. Information concerning physical assaults against NHS staff is expected to be available from summer 2005.
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Mr. Burns: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) doctors, (b) nurses, (c) consultants and (d) auxiliary staff have been victims of violence in the Mid-Essex Hospital Trust area in each of the last 10 years. 
However, the table shows figures from the violence, accidents and harassment survey (VAH) for 200001, 200102 and 200203. These are figures for Mid-Essex Hospital National Health Service Trust as a whole and cannot be broken down by staff groups. The VAH survey is no longer collected so these figures are the latest available.
|Mid-Essex Hospital Trust
Jane Kennedy: In November 2003, a comprehensive range of measures were introduced to tackle incidences of violence against national health service staff, both proactively and reactively. The NHS Security Management Service has begun a programme of work to identify the true nature, scale and extent of the problem of violence against NHS staff. Once this work is completed meaningful and achievable targets for delivering a secure environment for NHS staff will be set.
Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what advice and guidance her Department has issued on core education and training in respect of nutrition and malnutrition for (a) health and social care professionals and (b) health and social care workers involved in putting the new Unified Assessment procedures into practice at bands two and three of Agenda for Change or equivalent. 
Mr. Byrne: For health and social care professionals it is the responsibility of the appropriate regulatory bodies to set standards for the pre-registration training of doctors, nurses, social workers and other healthcare professionals and approve the education institutions that provide the training and determine the curricula.
Post-registration training needs for national health service staff are determined against local NHS priorities, through appraisal processes and training needs analyses informed by local delivery plans and the needs of the service. The post-qualification framework for social workers has been reviewed by the General
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Social Care Council and new arrangements for post qualification awards will come into force in September 2007.
For health and social care workers national occupational standards set out the skills, knowledge and values required and are used as benchmarks for national vocational qualifications. Joint health and social care national occupational standards contain specific standards on meeting nutritional needs.
Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what standards on meeting nutritional needs are included within Health and Social Care National Occupational Standards; and whether these standards are evidence-based. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: There are currently no evidence-based standards on meeting nutritional needs included within health and social care national occupational standards. However, the Department is developing a series of evidence and consensus-based guidelines relevant to occupational health practice as part of the redevelopment of NHS Plus as outlined in chapter seven, Work and Health" of the White Paper, Choosing HealthMaking healthy choices easier. The aim of this is both to increase the quality of NHS Plus services and to develop occupational health services in the national health service. These guidelines are collated on the evidence-based guideline section of the NHS plus website at: www.nhsplus.nhs.uk.
In addition, the new National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), in a joint collaboration between the Centre for Clinical Practice and the Centre for Public Health Excellence, formerly the Health Development Agency, is developing a clinical guideline for the prevention, identification, assessment and management of overweight and obesity in adults and children. This is expected to be issued in February 2007.
Anne Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made of the likely effect the standardisation of orthopaedic prosthesis will have on (a) the quality of life of affected patients in the West Hertfordshire Hospital and (b) patient choice; and if she will make a statement. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: There are no plans for the standardisation of orthopaedic prosthesis. However, the National Joint Registry (NJS) was established in April 2003 to collect information on total hip and knee replacement operations from hospitals in England and Wales. Both the national health service and independent health care sector are included. The NJR will enable surgeons, in discussion with patients, to agree which is the most appropriate prosthetic for individual patients needs.
NJR participation is not mandatory although trusts are exhorted to comply. The level of compliance is improving and currently stands at 98.7 per cent. in both the NHS and independent hospitals. The NJR steering group became an advisory non-departmental public
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body (ANDPB) in January 2005. The NJR steering group is reviewing the data collected to ensure the NJR can become a powerful clinical audit tool.
We are committed to giving patients more choice and control over their health care and services wherever possible. However, it is important to ensure that patients are only offered clinically appropriate choices. The NJR will enable surgeons to use the most appropriate orthopaedic prosthetic for specific patients needs, thus improving the quality of life for the patient post operatively.