Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the average daily number of general and acute beds open overnight bed was in each of the last three years for (i) England and (ii) each NHS trust; and what the bed occupancy rate was. 
The national schedule of reference costs for 2004 (the latest year available) shows that for activity undertaken within an national health service trust in England, the costs of an occupied bed day in different types of discrete critical care units are shown in the following table.
|National average cost per occupied bed day
|Intensive therapy unit/intensive care unit
|Burns intensive care unit
|Neurosurgical intensive care unit
|Spinal injuries intensive care unit
|Renal intensive care unit
|Cardiac intensive care unit
|High dependency unit
|Paediatric intensive care unit
|Neonatal intensive care unitlevel 1
|Neonatal intensive care unitlevel 2
Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what (a) advice is given on and (b) precautions are taken against the spread of MRSA in ambulances; and if she will make a statement. 
All national health service organisations, including ambulance trusts, should have systems in place to minimise the risk to patients from health care associated infections as required by Standards for Better Health (July 2004). Infection control policies and any particular precautions for reducing the spread of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) are a matter for individual trusts. Advice on appropriate precautions to reduce the spread of infection has been published by the Department in the Health Service Circular 200002 and in Winning WaysWorking together to reduce Hospital Acquired Infection in England" (December 2003).
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The Ambulance Service Association published Infection Prevention and Control: Managing Healthcare Associated Infection and Control of Serious Communicable Diseases", in June 2004. The guidance was reviewed recently by the Health Protection Agency, the National Patient Safety Agency and the Department's inspector of microbiology and is deemed to be suitable and sufficient, if used with robust auditing, to control MRSA and other health care associated infections. Additionally, the training and common core syllabus for ambulance personnel covers infection control, including reference to MRSA.
John Cummings: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many cleaners in (a) Sunderland Royal Hospital, (b) Hartlepool University Hospital and (c) Durham University Hospital are employed by (i) the NHS and (ii) private contractors. 
|City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust
|County Durham and Darlington Acute Hospitals NHS Trust
|North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Trust
|Tees and North East Yorkshire NHS Trust
Jane Kennedy: As part of the broader Home Office-led identification cards programme, the Department is considering the costs and benefits of using ID cards within the national health service, including the cost of card readers. No decisions on the deployment, and hence the costs, of such readers have been made.
Information showing the latest figures available for midwifery vacancy rates and staff in post for London national health service trusts and strategic health authorities has been placed in the Library.
Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if she will list the reserve powers she holds to take control of (a) primary care trusts, (b) hospital trusts, (c) ambulance trusts, (d) strategic health authorities and (e) mental health trusts; which section of the relevant legislation gives her each such power; under what circumstances each can be activated by her; and if she will make a statement; 
(2) on how many occasions her reserve powers to take control of (a) primary care trusts, (b) hospital trusts, (c) ambulance trusts, (d) strategic health authorities and (e) mental health trusts have been used; if she will list the institutions involved; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Byrne [holding answer 23 June 2005]: The legal powers that enable the Department to require individual trusts to change their senior management are contained within Section 13 of the Health and Social Care Act 2001. This states that the Secretary of State may make an intervention order if she is not satisfied that a national health service body is performing one or more of its functions adequately or at all, or that there are significant failings in the way that the body is being run. The order would specify the extent to which changes to senior management would have to be made.
The legal powers contained within Section 13 of the Health and Social Care Act 2001 that enable the Secretary of State for Health to require individual organisations to make senior management changes have not had to be used yet.
Jane Kennedy: The funding allocated to the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) by the Department and the Welsh Assembly Government is show in the table. The figures also include the allocation to NICE's funding for capital charges.
|NICE running cost budget (£)