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Mr. Byrne: The hon. Gentleman must wait for the new arrangements that my hon. Friend the Minister of State will announce next week.

Members on both sides of the House spoke of the differences made to access throughout the country. My hon. Friend the Member for Hackney, North and Stoke Newington (Ms Abbott) explained how our reforms would benefit urban areas. I thank her for her recognition of the record investment in the NHS and NHS dentistry. I join her in celebrating the availability of dentists in Hackney. She, too, mentioned the important issue of fluoridation, to which I will alert my hon. Friend the Member for Don Valley (Caroline Flint), the Under-Secretary of State for Health.
29 Jun 2005 : Column 1352

My hon. Friend the Member for Selby (Mr. Grogan) has not been to Cheadle for some reason, but I welcome his endorsement of our strategy. As he said, his constituency is benefiting from the changes. His local PCT has eight new recruits, and registration has increased by more than 8,000. That is a good example of the difference that can be made—not least in the widening of access—by transferring commissioning to PCTs, which are now in control of £1.6 billion. He concluded with some sage advice on contract consultations in the months to come, which will doubtless be of great benefit to my hon. Friend the Minister of State. My hon. Friend the Member for Copeland (Mr. Reed) added to those thoughts with a helpful contribution of his own.

My hon. Friend the Member for Plymouth, Sutton also congratulated the Government on the progress that has been made. I thank her for that, and in turn congratulate her on engaging with her local PCT. I am sure that its hitting its targets is not unrelated to the strong interest that she takes in local matters. She underlined the strength of her city's claim to be host to a new dental school; I am sure that my hon. Friend the Minister of State will have listened very carefully to what she had to say. What a welcome change to be debating where to open dental schools, rather than mourning their closure.

My hon. Friend the Member for South Swindon highlighted the sharp contrast in her constituency between the situation now and before 1997. Some of the innovation that she highlighted was especially useful. Her constituency has indeed benefited considerably. Her PCT has a growth in registrations of 4,500 coming its way. Her strategic health authority has nearly £2 million extra in capital and revenue resources, as well as an access centre. I must congratulate her on taking a close interest in dental matters in her constituency—so close that she was drawn into a little personal research in what sounded like the most pressing of circumstances. She highlighted the need to publicise the new dentistry services that are available, and I can only agree. She also raised a specific case, on which I shall write to her.

I want to conclude my survey of this afternoon's contributions with that of the hon. Member for Westbury (Dr. Murrison), who opened with some excellent jokes and then proceeded to tell some that were slightly less amusing. I was especially intrigued by his idea that, on the basis of evidence, dental schools will close. I was not sure which evidence he meant. Was it the number of registrations falling by 2.1 million or treatments falling by 600,000? He did not say. He did, however, underline the need for an NHS commitment to dentistry, with which I can only concur.

The hon. Gentleman also underlined the importance of a personal touch, but he said that he was unsure about our commitment to delivering it. Well, the best way to guarantee it is by recruiting more dentists, not by encouraging them to drift away. The best way to guarantee it is by training new dentists for the future, not by closing down dental schools. He emphasised the importance of registration, which intrigued me slightly. The hon. Member for South Cambridgeshire (Mr. Lansley), who is not in his place, has said that the Conservatives' plans do not guarantee patients' ability to register, even in cases where they have secured insurance.
29 Jun 2005 : Column 1353

In conclusion, I celebrate the House's resolve time and again to address itself to the vital issue of the nation's oral health. This is our third debate on this issue in the past 12 months. Once again, we have spent an afternoon counting the cost of clearing up the Conservatives' legacy. Once again, we have heard of the damage done by their calamitous contract of 1990. Once again, we have heard of the price paid for their decision to close dental schools. And once again, we have heard from the Liberal Democrats a solution—

Mr. Walker: After eight years, is it not about time that Labour started taking responsibility for this issue?

Mr. Byrne: Let us look at the figures. The number of dentists is up by 20 per cent.; the number of adult registrations is up by 180,000 since 1998; the number of treatments is up by 6 million. So I have absolutely no apologies to make for this Government's record in office. It is a record of which we are proud.

Linda Gilroy: A little earlier, I mentioned that one issue that the Conservatives perhaps have difficulty in getting their heads round is that in 1997 we inherited a situation in which some 42p in every new pound of taxation was being spent on the cost of economic failure, unemployment and the national debt, which had got out of control. I did not mention that that figure has now dropped to some 11p in the pound, which means that we have the money to invest in a sustainable way. Does my hon. Friend agree that that is a key point and that it should give us confidence in future?

Mr. Byrne: I agree entirely with my hon. Friend. We can be very proud of the fact that investment in NHS dentistry is increasing by 19 per cent. over the next year.

That leads me to the question of finance. Once again, we heard from the Liberal Democrats a solution, the delicate foundation of which appears to rest on spending money spent once or twice before. The right hon. Member for Ross, Skye and Lochaber (Mr. Kennedy) has told the newspapers that his party is embarked on a great adventure. It is embarked on a policy review without precondition or presupposition, a clean sheet and a move away from

which I can only assume is a reference to the Liberal Democrat annual conference. I hope that what the Liberal Democrats have heard this afternoon has put them off writing on that blank sheet a break-up of the national health service, as proposed by some of their number in "The Orange Book". What this country wants is NHS dentistry rejuvenated by the reforms outlined by the Minister of State earlier this afternoon. These are the most ambitious reforms since 1948, which promise to accelerate the increased number of dentists, increased number of treatments and increased number of registrations already delivered in the last Parliament.

Dr. Murrison: Before he finishes, will the Minister confirm whether it is his intention to publish Harry Cayton's report next week in part or in full?

Mr. Byrne: We will publish it in full, even though it is unusual to publish the full details of reports constructed
29 Jun 2005 : Column 1354
by external working groups. The principles and the details set out next week will be extremely important and I hope that both sides of the House will join in a constructive debate on them. The Minister of State has set out a strategy this afternoon and the next steps will be set out next week. I commend the Government amendment to the House.

Question put, That the original words stand part of the Question:—

The House divided: Ayes 65, Noes 467.

Division No. 23
[3.51 pm


Baker, Norman
Barrett, John
Beith, rh Mr. Alan
Brake, Tom
Breed, Mr. Colin
Brooke, Annette
Browne, Mr. Jeremy
Bruce, Malcolm
Burstow, Mr. Paul
Burt, Lorely
Cable, Dr. Vincent
Campbell, Mr. Gregory
Campbell, rh Sir Menzies
Carmichael, Mr. Alistair
Clegg, Mr. Nick
Davey, Mr. Edward
Dodds, Mr. Nigel
Featherstone, Lynne
George, Andrew
Gidley, Sandra
Goldsworthy, Julia
Hancock, Mr. Mike
Harris, Dr. Evan
Harvey, Nick
Heath, Mr. David
Hemming, John
Hermon, Lady
Holmes, Paul
Horwood, Mr. Martin
Howarth, David
Hughes, Simon
Huhne, Chris
Keetch, Mr. Paul
Kennedy, rh Mr. Charles
Kramer, Susan
Lamb, Norman
Laws, Mr. David
Leech, Mr. John
Llwyd, Mr. Elfyn
Moore, Mr. Michael
Mulholland, Greg
Oaten, Mr. Mark
Öpik, Lembit
Paisley, Rev. Ian
Pugh, Dr. John
Reid, Mr. Alan
Robinson, Mrs. Iris
Robinson, Mr. Peter
Rogerson, Mr. Dan
Rowen, Paul
Russell, Bob
Sanders, Mr. Adrian
Smith, Sir Robert
Stunell, Andrew
Swinson, Jo
Taylor, Dr. Richard
Teather, Sarah
Thurso, John
Webb, Steve
Williams, Hywel
Williams, Mark
Williams, Mr. Roger
Williams, Stephen
Willis, Mr. Phil
Wilson, Sammy

Tellers for the Ayes:

Richard Younger-Ross and
Danny Alexander


Abbott, Ms Diane
Afriyie, Adam
Ainger, Nick
Ainsworth, rh Mr. Bob
Allen, Mr. Graham
Amess, Mr. David
Ancram, rh Mr. Michael
Anderson, Mr. David
Anderson, Janet
Armstrong, rh Hilary
Atkins, Charlotte
Austin, Mr. Ian
Austin, John
Bacon, Mr. Richard
Bailey, Mr. Adrian
Baird, Vera
Baldry, Tony
Banks, Gordon
Barker, Gregory
Barlow, Ms Celia
Baron, Mr. John
Barron, rh Mr. Kevin
Battle, rh John
Bayley, Hugh
Beckett, rh Margaret
Begg, Miss Anne
Bell, Sir Stuart
Bellingham, Mr. Henry
Benn, rh Hilary
Benton, Mr. Joe
Benyon, Mr. Richard
Beresford, Sir Paul
Berry, Roger
Betts, Mr. Clive
Binley, Mr. Brian
Blackman, Liz
Blears, rh Hazel
Blizzard, Mr. Bob
Blunkett, rh Mr. David
Blunt, Mr. Crispin
Bone, Mr. Peter
Borrow, Mr. David S.
Boswell, Mr. Tim
Bottomley, Peter
Bradshaw, Mr. Ben
Brady, Mr. Graham
Brazier, Mr. Julian
Brennan, Kevin
Brokenshire, James
Brown, Lyn
Brown, rh Mr. Nicholas
Brown, Mr. Russell
Browne, rh Mr. Des
Browning, Angela
Bryant, Chris
Buck, Ms Karen
Burden, Richard
Burns, Mr. Simon
Burt, Alistair
Butler, Ms Dawn
Butterfill, Sir John
Byrne, Mr. Liam
Cairns, David
Cameron, Mr. David
Campbell, Mr. Alan
Campbell, Mr. Ronnie
Carswell, Mr. Douglas
Cash, Mr. William
Caton, Mr. Martin
Cawsey, Mr. Ian
Challen, Colin
Chaytor, Mr. David
Chope, Mr. Christopher
Clapham, Mr. Michael
Clappison, Mr. James
Clark, Greg
Clark, Ms Katy
Clark, Paul
Clarke, rh Mr. Charles
Clarke, rh Mr. Kenneth
Clelland, Mr. David
Clwyd, rh Ann
Coaker, Mr. Vernon
Coffey, Ann
Cohen, Harry
Connarty, Michael
Cook, Frank
Cook, rh Mr. Robin
Cooper, Rosie
Corbyn, Jeremy
Cormack, Sir Patrick
Cousins, Jim
Crabb, Mr. Stephen
Crausby, Mr. David
Creagh, Mary
Cruddas, Jon
Cryer, Mrs. Ann
Cummings, John
Cunningham, Mr. Jim
Curry, rh Mr. David
Curtis-Thomas, Mrs. Claire
Davidson, Mr. Ian
Davies, David T.C. (Monmouth)
Davies, Philip
Davis, rh David (Haltemprice and Howden)
Dean, Mrs. Janet
Denham, rh Mr. John
Dhanda, Mr. Parmjit
Dismore, Mr. Andrew
Djanogly, Mr. Jonathan
Dobbin, Jim
Dobson, rh Frank
Donohoe, Mr. Brian H.
Doran, Mr. Frank
Dorries, Mrs. Nadine
Drew, Mr. David
Duddridge, James
Duncan, Mr. Alan
Duncan Smith, rh Mr. Iain
Dunwoody, Mrs. Gwyneth
Durkan, Mark
Eagle, Angela
Eagle, Maria
Efford, Clive
Ellman, Mrs. Louise
Ellwood, Mr. Tobias
Ennis, Jeff
Etherington, Bill
Evans, Mr. Nigel
Evennett, Mr. David
Fabricant, Michael
Fallon, Mr. Michael
Farrelly, Paul
Field, rh Mr. Frank
Field, Mr. Mark
Fisher, Mark
Fitzpatrick, Jim
Flello, Mr. Robert
Flint, Caroline
Flynn, Paul
Follett, Barbara
Forth, rh Mr. Eric
Foster, Mr. Michael (Worcester)
Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings and Rye)
Fox, Dr. Liam
Francis, Dr. Hywel
Francois, Mr. Mark
Fraser, Mr. Christopher
Gale, Mr. Roger
Gapes, Mike
Gardiner, Barry
Garnier, Mr. Edward
Gauke, Mr. David
George, rh Mr. Bruce
Gerrard, Mr. Neil
Gibb, Mr. Nick
Gibson, Dr. Ian
Gillan, Mrs. Cheryl
Gilroy, Linda
Godsiff, Mr. Roger
Goggins, Paul
Goodman, Helen
Gove, Michael
Gray, Mr. James
Grayling, Chris
Green, Damian
Greening, Justine
Greenway, Mr. John
Grieve, Mr. Dominic
Griffith, Nia
Grogan, Mr. John
Gwynne, Andrew
Hague, rh Mr. William
Hall, Mr. Mike
Hall, Patrick
Hamilton, Mr. David
Hammond, Stephen
Harman, rh Ms Harriet
Harper, Mr. Mark
Harris, Mr. Tom
Havard, Mr. Dai
Hayes, Mr. John
Heald, Mr. Oliver
Healey, John
Henderson, Mr. Doug
Hendrick, Mr. Mark
Hendry, Charles
Hepburn, Mr. Stephen
Herbert, Mr. Nick
Hesford, Stephen
Hewitt, rh Ms Patricia
Heyes, David
Hill, rh Keith
Hillier, Meg
Hoban, Mr. Mark
Hodge, rh Margaret
Hodgson, Mrs. Sharon
Hoey, Kate
Hollobone, Mr. Philip
Holloway, Mr. Adam
Hood, Mr. Jimmy
Hoon, rh Mr. Geoffrey
Hope, Phil
Hopkins, Kelvin
Horam, Mr. John
Howarth, Mr. George
Howarth, Mr. Gerald
Howells, Dr. Kim
Hoyle, Mr. Lindsay
Humble, Mrs. Joan
Hunt, Mr. Jeremy
Hurd, Mr. Nick
Hutton, rh Mr. John
Iddon, Dr. Brian
Illsley, Mr. Eric
Irranca-Davies, Huw
Jack, rh Mr. Michael
Jackson, Glenda
Jackson, Mr. Stewart
James, Mrs. Siân C.
Jenkins, Mr. Brian
Johnson, Mr. Boris
Johnson, Ms Diana R.
Jones, Mr. David
Jones, Helen
Jones, Mr. Kevan
Jones, Lynne
Jones, Mr. Martyn
Jowell, rh Tessa
Joyce, Mr. Eric
Kaufman, rh Sir Gerald
Kawczynski, Daniel
Keeble, Ms Sally
Keeley, Ms Barbara
Keen, Alan
Keen, Ann
Kelly, rh Ruth
Kemp, Mr. Fraser
Kennedy, rh Jane
Khabra, Mr. Piara S.
Khan, Mr. Sadiq
Kidney, Mr. David
Kilfoyle, Mr. Peter
Knight, rh Mr. Greg
Knight, Jim
Kumar, Dr. Ashok
Ladyman, Dr. Stephen
Lait, Mrs. Jacqui
Lammy, Mr. David
Laxton, Mr. Bob
Lazarowicz, Mark
Lepper, David
Letwin, rh Mr. Oliver
Levitt, Tom
Lewis, Dr. Julian
Liddell-Grainger, Mr. Ian
Lidington, Mr. David
Linton, Martin
Lloyd, Tony
Loughton, Tim
Love, Mr. Andrew
Lucas, Ian
Luff, Peter
MacDougall, Mr. John
Mackay, rh Mr. Andrew
Mackinlay, Andrew
MacShane, Mr. Denis
Mahmood, Mr. Khalid
Main, Anne
Malik, Mr. Shahid
Malins, Mr. Humfrey
Mallaber, Judy
Mann, John
Marris, Rob
Marsden, Mr. Gordon
Marshall, Mr. David
Martlew, Mr. Eric
May, rh Mrs. Theresa
McAvoy, rh Mr. Thomas
McCabe, Steve
McCafferty, Chris
McCarthy, Kerry
McCarthy-Fry, Sarah
McCartney, rh Mr. Ian
McDonagh, Siobhain
McDonnell, Dr. Alasdair
McDonnell, John
McFadden, Mr. Pat
McFall, rh Mr. John
McGovern, Mr. Jim
McGrady, Mr. Eddie
McIntosh, Miss Anne
McIsaac, Shona
McKechin, Ann
McKenna, Rosemary
McLoughlin, Mr. Patrick
McNulty, Mr. Tony
Meacher, rh Mr. Michael
Merron, Gillian
Michael, rh Alun
Miliband, rh Mr. David
Miliband, Edward
Miller, Andrew
Miller, Mrs. Maria
Milton, Anne
Mitchell, Mr. Andrew
Mitchell, Mr. Austin
Moffat, Anne
Mole, Chris
Moon, Mrs. Madeleine
Moran, Margaret
Morden, Jessica
Morgan, Julie
Morley, Mr. Elliot
Moss, Mr. Malcolm
Mountford, Kali
Mudie, Mr. George
Mullin, Mr. Chris
Mundell, David
Munn, Meg
Murphy, Mr. Denis
Murphy, Mr. Jim
Murphy, rh Mr. Paul
Murrison, Dr. Andrew
Naysmith, Dr. Doug
Newmark, Mr. Brooks
Norris, Dan
O'Brien, Mr. Mike
O'Brien, Mr. Stephen
O'Hara, Mr. Edward
Olner, Mr. Bill
Osborne, Mr. George
Osborne, Sandra
Ottaway, Richard
Owen, Albert
Paice, Mr. James
Palmer, Dr. Nick
Paterson, Mr. Owen
Pelling, Mr. Andrew
Penning, Mike
Penrose, John
Pickles, Mr. Eric
Plaskitt, Mr. James
Pope, Mr. Greg
Pound, Stephen
Prentice, Bridget
Prentice, Mr. Gordon
Primarolo, rh Dawn
Prisk, Mr. Mark
Pritchard, Mark
Prosser, Gwyn
Purchase, Mr. Ken
Purnell, James
Redwood, rh Mr. John
Reed, Mr. Andy
Reed, Mr. Jamie
Reid, rh John
Rifkind, rh Sir Malcolm
Riordan, Mrs. Linda
Robathan, Mr. Andrew
Robertson, Hugh
Robertson, John
Robertson, Mr. Laurence
Robinson, Mr. Geoffrey
Rooney, Mr. Terry
Rosindell, Andrew
Roy, Mr. Frank
Ruane, Chris
Ruddock, Joan
Ruffley, Mr. David
Russell, Christine
Ryan, Joan
Salter, Martin
Sarwar, Mr. Mohammad
Scott, Mr. Lee
Seabeck, Alison
Shapps, Grant
Shaw, Jonathan
Sheerman, Mr. Barry
Shepherd, Mr. Richard
Sheridan, Jim
Simmonds, Mark
Simon, Mr. Siôn
Simpson, Alan
Singh, Mr. Marsha
Skinner, Mr. Dennis
Slaughter, Mr. Andrew
Smith, rh Mr. Andrew
Smith, Ms Angela C. (Sheffield, Hillsborough)
Smith, Angela E. (Basildon)
Smith, Geraldine
Smith, rh Jacqui
Smith, John
Snelgrove, Anne
Soames, Mr. Nicholas
Soulsby, Sir Peter
Southworth, Helen
Spellar, rh Mr. John
Spicer, Sir Michael
Spink, Bob
Spring, Mr. Richard
Stanley, rh Sir John
Starkey, Dr. Phyllis
Steen, Mr. Anthony
Stewart, Ian
Stoate, Dr. Howard
Strang, rh Dr. Gavin
Streeter, Mr. Gary
Stringer, Graham
Stuart, Ms Gisela
Stuart, Mr. Graham
Swayne, Mr. Desmond
Swire, Mr. Hugo
Syms, Mr. Robert
Tami, Mark
Tapsell, Sir Peter
Taylor, Ms Dari
Taylor, David
Thornberry, Ms Emily
Timms, Mr. Stephen
Tipping, Paddy
Todd, Mr. Mark
Trickett, Jon
Truswell, Mr. Paul
Turner, Mr. Andrew
Turner, Dr. Desmond
Turner, Mr. Neil
Twigg, Derek
Tyrie, Mr. Andrew
Vaizey, Mr. Edward
Vaz, Keith
Viggers, Peter
Villiers, Mrs. Theresa
Vis, Dr. Rudi
Walker, Mr. Charles
Wallace, Mr. Ben
Walley, Joan
Waltho, Lynda
Ward, Claire
Wareing, Mr. Robert N.
Waterson, Mr. Nigel
Watkinson, Angela
Watson, Mr. Tom
Whitehead, Dr. Alan
Whittingdale, Mr. John
Wicks, Malcolm
Wiggin, Bill
Williams, rh Mr. Alan
Williams, Mrs. Betty
Wills, Mr. Michael
Wilshire, Mr. David
Wilson, Mr. Rob
Winnick, Mr. David
Winterton, Ann
Winterton, Sir Nicholas
Winterton, Ms Rosie
Wood, Mike
Woodward, Mr. Shaun
Woolas, Mr. Phil
Wright, Mr. Anthony
Wright, David
Wright, Mr. Iain
Wright, Jeremy
Wright, Dr. Tony
Wyatt, Derek
Yeo, Mr. Tim
Young, rh Sir George

Tellers for the Noes:

Tony Cunningham and
Mr. Dave Watts

Question accordingly negatived.

29 Jun 2005 : Column 1358

Question, That the proposed words be there added, put forthwith, pursuant to Standing Order No. 31 (Questions on amendments), and agreed to.

Mr. Deputy Speaker forthwith declared the main Question, as amended, to be agreed to.


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